Visiting the Hacienda: The Hotel, the Farm, and the Restaurant
As I mentioned in my previous blog post, the city of Salamanca is a small, but nevertheless tourist-hotspot-cramped city. The locals here also travel mainly on foot as well, so when we had our tour around the city of Salamanca, we toured on foot—a walking tour!
Hacienda Zorita Organic Farm
With that said, the walking tour didn’t take very long. The tourist destinations we went to were mostly next to each other, and the walking tour was over just before lunchtime.
Sheep Farming at Hacienda Zorita
We went to Hacienda Zorita (hotel info), a farm, to tour around before lunch.
Hacienda Zorita Wine Hotel and Spa (rates)
The Hacienda is a well-known farm in Salamanca, and, like most of the city, Hacienda Zorita is like a farm back from the past. The farm produces organic goods, which include vegetables, fruits, olive oil, bread, and balsamic vinegar. Products from their animals are also organic, like their Iberico hams and charcuterie, and their famous, high-quality, raw milk ewe’s cheese.
Queso de Dehesa Curado
The farm was over 300 hectares wide, and has the goal of protecting local species of plants and animals. With this goal, we were told that most of the animals are not tied up or kept in houses. They were, rather, free to wonder around. While we walked, we saw a flock of sheep, which was the source of the farm’s self-produced ewe cheese.
Hacienda Zorita Wine Hotel in Salamanca
Local residents were also free to wonder around and come to the farm at their will. When I heard that, I started to love the city more and more! Salamanca City really gave me the feeling of travelling back in time, where life is at its most basic.
We walked further into the farm past the 85-year-old Olive trees, and spotted the Hacienda’s Cheese Processing Building. The cheese plant looked like the hotel (Hacienda Zorita) in many ways.
Cheese Tasting at Hacienda Zorita
We were allowed to enter. I saw how the cheese is made. Although most of the process involves machinery, I learned that it requires much patience and finesse. The cheese were stored in a clean and temperature-controlled environment. But all this is worth it, because the cheese (we were allowed to taste some of the finished product) was nothing short of superb!
Hacienda Zorita Wines
Wine Barrels inside Hacienda Zorita
We were told by the tour guide of the farm that they produce almost 18 000 kilograms of cheese every year, and that in 2012, Hacienda Zorita (book now) was awarded for having the Best Cheese in the World in Birmingham.
La Casa Grande Wine Hotel
After our little trip to the farm, we headed back to Hacienda Zorita Hotel. We were showed the wine cellar before we finally headed to the restaurant for lunch.
One of the Villas inside Hacienda Zorita
Alfresco Dining at Zoritas Kitchen
The hotel’s in-house restaurant, Zoritas Kitchen, is located beside a creek, which gives off a very peaceful and relaxing aura, like the rest of Salamanca. The interior is also very cozy, inspired by Dominican refectories.
Hacienda Zorita Wine Hotel
We were told that the restaurant gets its ingredients only from their farm Hacienda Zorita, which is somewhat relieving and nice.
Parrillada de Verduras con Mojo Iberico
For lunch, we were served Parrillada de Verduras con Mojo Iberico, grilled vegetables with olive oil. We also had Merluza con Cebolla Confitada y Sofrito de Ajo, a dish with fish, caramelized onions, garlic, and some spices. The main dishes were very flavorful, as expected from a city so rich in culture and tradition.
Merluza con Cebolla Confitada y Sofrito de Ajo
To dampen down all the spice of the main dishes, we had Sopa de Frutos Rojos con Helado de Queso for dessert, which literally translates to “Cream Cheese-flavored Ice Cream in Red Fruit Sauce”. It must be the source of the ingredients (the Hacienda Zorita farm) that’s making the Kitchen’s food so tasty, I supposed.
Sopa de Frutos Rojos con Helado de Queso
I had a lunch like no other.
Visiting the Hacienda Zorita’s farm, and its Kitchen, was perhaps one of the highlights of my trip to Salamanca. The environment, the exterior and interior of the buildings, the food, and the hospitality of the locals made me think of it that way.
Hacienda Zorita Wine Hotel & Spa (book now)
+ 34 923 12 94 00
Carretera Salamanca a Ledesma, SA-300. Km 8.700
37115 Valverdón (Salamanca).
GPS Coordinates: N41.04269° – W05.75915°