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We will dance over the grape

The International Festival of the Vintage is a good pretext to visit Ica and to discover the charms of this noble city

Ica gets dressed of happiness in the first days of March, during the International Festival of the Vintage, because in the land of wine, pisco and cachina, the crop of the grape is a party reason that allows to forget any sadness or pain.

The vintage is the party dedicated to the grape, noble fruit that grows in the arid fields of Ica and that, thanks to its quality, allows to produce the most valuable wines in Peru, transforming Ica into a wine producer region per excellence.

The cut of the grape clusters is the main attraction of the vintage. It is an entire ritual that begins with the crop... and feminine hands cut the juicy clusters that are deposited in baskets.

Women leave their load in the press (small deposit in which men step over the grape to extract its must) where barefoot men enter, singing and dancing over the grapes until there is not even one left.

The history of the vineyards in Ica goes back to the years after the consolidation of the conquest of Peru, when the Spaniards realized that it was necessary to have some products of Europe, among them the wine.

According to the book "Ica... land of the sun", by Liliana Osorio Osorio and Juan Rivera Tosi, it was Nicolás de Ribera, "El Viejo" who produced in his lands of Tacaraca (Ica) the first wine elaborated in the continent, which was called "aloque", for the variety of the grape they used. Spaniards did not like this wine, for what they decided to elaborate a liquor with the must that had a splendid result.

"Their fame passed over the frontiers of America and it began to be sent to Spain. The barrels with the valuable liquor were embarked from the Port of Pisco, for what they begun to call it Liquor of Pisco, and finally, just Pisco." During the holidays, the field and the city get transformed. In the country properties they offer pachamancas and there are carried out competitions of Creole music, fight of roosters and exhibitions of caballos de paso (dancing horses).


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