The Bodegas de la Real Divisa
The Bodegas de la Real Divisa, of Ábalos (Rioja), date from at least 1367 and are some of the oldest wineries in production in Europe. Bodegas de la Real Divisa owe their name to the emblem of the pitcher with white lilies that can be found upon the entrance arch, an symbol which is not only historic, but is also closely connected with the Royal House of Navarra
Marqués de Legarda, the red wine of Bodegas de la Real Divisa, has adorned the tables of many noble, Spanish families over many years.
King García III, of Nájera (1035-1054), founded the Order of the Terazza (Order of the Pitcher), to which said emblem corresponds to commemorate his encounter with the image of Our Lady the Virgin in a cave, over which he erected the Monastery of Santa María Real of Nájera, pantheon of the Kings of Navarra.
According to legend, King García, went out hunting with his goshawk one morning, near the peak of Nájera, along part of the French Way. A partridge took flight and it, followed by the goshawk, took refuge in a cave hidden by brambles and holms. The falcon breached the entrance and the King followed. He found himself face to face with the image of the Our Lady with the Child Jesus, at whose feet and on either side, the goshawk and the partridge lay in perfect harmony, in the foreground there was a pitcher filled with lilies.
Bodegas de la Real Divisa were the first wineries of Rioja to receive a medal at the Bordeaux Exhibition in 1895.
The Order of the Terraza
The Order of the Terazza is considered to be the first Order of Chivalry in Spain. To it belonged, the Kings of Navarra, their descendants and other distinguished nobles of the court. To honor the Our Lady, King García established the custom of ‘salve sabatina’, which is maintained today by the monarchy of Spain, and chose the Day of the Annunciation (March 25th) as his annual holiday.
The Order of the Terazza enjoyed its most splendid era in the 11th and 12th centuries, after which time it practically disappeared. In the first years of the 15th century, Infante D. Fernando of Antequera carried out a reestablishment of the Order, modifying the original emblem by adding a griffin, which holds the Pitcher of Lilies.
The oldest part of the Bodegas de la Real Divisa most likely corresponds to the aforementioned era of splendor of the Order as attests the purity of the carving of the pitcher on its façade, which pales compared to the embellishments added in 1403, and therefore must date back to an earlier period
The Marquis of Legarda
Francisco Fernández of Navarrete and López of Montenegor is the Marquis of Legarda. This title was given in 1664 and with it, the four wines from Bodegas de la Real Divisa have been baptized. These wineries were founded with this name in 1968, in Ábalos, La Rioja. They are considered to be the oldest wineries of La Rioja, and are located in a building from the 14th century. Don Francisco Fernández of Navarrete, owner and president of the wineries, followed in the footsteps of his grandfather, Don Antonio.