Apart from being Stoke’s patron saint of wine (sorry Saint Vincent of Zaragoza), San Vino is the name that we’ve given to La Batalla de Vino de Haro, aka the Wine Fight of Haro, La Rioja, right in the belly of northern Spain’s world-class red-wine region. To answer what is San Vino we really have to address what precisely is a wine fight, a concept so foreign to anybody outside of this small village, in this tiny and tucked away region of Spain.
The wine fight is, literally, a fight with wine. Think buckets and waterguns and anything that carries liquids, filled with the local red wine and liberally thrown and poured on anyone and everyone who enters the splashing fields. There is so much wine that literally everybody, and every part of said bodies, will be absolutely soaked in red wine and maybe a little drunk from it soaking through their pores. It’s like La Tomatina, Valencia’s world-famous tomato fight, but instead of being pelted with tomatoes, a salad vegetable that isn’t universally loved, we’re splashed and soaked in red wine, a product that only psychopaths dislike.
San Vino’s History
Like most Spanish fiestas the history is a little lost, as each year goes on and the protagonists get drunker, we forget precisely how they kicked off. For San Vino the legend goes that to solve a land dispute between the village of Haro and neighbouring Logroño the local regent declared that every year, on the 29th of June, the haro townsfolk had to erect a border of purple flags below the Cliffs of Bilbio, the site of the modern wine fight. Early on, the erection resulted in some skirmishes between the villagers, and after a while they began battling with the wine that they were using to dye the flags. This obviously turned from an act of aggression into one of hedonistic joy, and thus San Vino was born.
Why San Vino?
Because it’s a fight, with wine. With WINE! Also it’s a very authentic festival in the middle of Spain’s stunning wine country, both a party and an area that haven’t yet been inundated with tourists. The locals will be happy to see you and to party alongside you and to splash you with delicious red wine. We’re also combining the party with a cheese and wine fair, a massive street party, DJs at our campsite and our regular all-inclusive package.
How Does San Vino Work?
On the morning of the wine fight we make our way from the Stoke Travel campsite up to the Cliffs of Bilbio where, armed with our finest red wine, we proceed to throw it all over the mostly local crowd. Afterwards we make our way back down the hill, completely soaked to the bone in purple nectar. Along the walk back we’ll see the locals making BBQs and the more adventurous amongst us might try such local delicacies as garden snails, or every part of the pig, all washed down with delicious local grape juice (fermented!).
Interested in San Vino? Of course you are! Book your spot now.
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