Fondillon or not Fondillon, that is the question

Fondillon barrels

What was supposed to be a self-indulgent article on the qualities of Fondillon wine -fondellol or fondelló in Valencian-, the noble wine of Alicante par excellence, turned out to be much more difficult than expected. We were going to talk about its singularities, to say that its production is based on the transmission of the maturity, knowledge and peculiarities of a wine that is only obtained with time and patience. Also that it is passed on from the original generation to the younger ones with whom it is mixed year after year through the soleras. But it turns out that the more we investigated to be able to speak with knowledge, the more doubts we had. What is the Fondillon, what is its origin? It seems easy to answer these questions, but it is not.

Fondillon has been the most recognised and popular Alicante wine in the world for centuries, or so we are told over the years. This story needs to be challenged. Although there are many sources that affirm and ratify this, other researchers maintain that this first wine was not Fondillon but a sweet red wine. It seems that the first Alicante wine was made in the 15th century in the "Horta Alicantina", the marshy plain of Alicante, known as the Allegant wine. Many sources consider it to be or have called it - it is not known why - Fondillon wine. However, it should be borne in mind that Alicante wine is not Fondillon, although Fondillon is an Alicante wine.