Aresan is the culmination of a 25-year friendship in wine. Those friends, Arena and Sanchez, established the winery in 2003 and named it after themselves. They are located in La Mancha, right in the center of Spain. La Mancha is the largest area covered in vines; nearly 500,000 acres of vineyards in one spot. It's almost hard to imagine a wine area that massive.
The reason for so many vineyards here is that it's a perfect place to grow grapes. At more than 2,000 feet above sea level, it is also conducive to organic farming. Pesticides are not needed as insects apparently do not like high altitudes, which works perfectly for Aresan.
La Mancha has a much-heralded history. After centuries of battles, the area was finally unified in 1492 by Queen Isabel and King Ferdinand. It was then that they sent Christopher Columbus on his famous journey to discover The New World.
Verdejo is probably the most popular white grape in Spain. It seems to do well in dry, arid climates, especially in La Mancha. The lack of rain produces smaller berries, with more flavor and extract. Here the grape basks in the sun producing a lovely peach and apricot-scented elixir with a sharp, tantalizing finish.
Its medium body and full flavors make it the perfect foil for any Spanish delicacy, from a salty cuttlefish stew with potatoes and garlic to roast guinea hen seasoned with fennel and cumin.