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Spain’s Wine Diplomacy in Cuba | Foods and Wines From Spain


Spain’s Wine Diplomacy in Cuba

30 Mar 2016

Conca de Barberà and Ribera del Duero on Presidential tables.

The wines from Spain shine on the tables that hosted President Obama.

Author: Rosa María González Lamas/©ICEX


President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle made a toast to a new diplomatic era between Cuba and the United States with red and white wines from Spain.

Catalonia and Castile-León were represented in the glasses of Milmanda 2012, Vega Sicilia 2007 and Conde de San Cristóbal, three wines from Spain served during the first official visit a US president paid to Cuba in 80 years.

Milmanda, a top level, elegant Chardonnay produced by Bodegas Torres in Conca de Barberà DO was the white wine served at the official state dinner that sat together President Obama and Cuban President Raúl Castro at Havana’s Palacio de la Revolución. The wine paired the menu’s first course of golden cream dressed with rum and ham tips. The Torres family has a special connection with Cuba, where Jaime Torres lived before returning to Spain and founding the family winery in 1870.

Vega Sicilia Único 2007, from Ribera Del Duero, harmonized the dinner’s main course of Cuban-style pig roast, served with tamales and ripe plantain slices.

There still was another wine from Ribera Del Duero on the presidential couple’s path, Conde de San Cristóbal Crianza, a Tempranillo-Merlot-Cabernet Sauvignon blend that delighted Ms. Obama during a dinner at Paladar San Cristóbal, a restaurant where the Obamas dined in Havana. Part of the Marqués de Vargas Group, Conde de San Cristóbal winery is located near Peñafiel and has been present in Cuba for a decade.

A delegation of 40 congressmen and representatives from various social sectors, including Spanish Chef José Andrés, joined President Obama in Cuba.

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