Spain is one of the countries in the world notable for its culinary arts and cuisine. However, there is one iconic and traditional product that has stood the test of time as a gastronomic favourite: Jamon, pig’s hind leg cured with salt and time.
Anyone who’s tasted jamon knows that the Spanish jamon, silky in texture and deeply savoury, is better than ham made anywhere else. Take note: they are not smoked or cooked in any way. The salt essentially plays an important role in the curing process from salting or “salado” to drying and maturation or “secado”. And when ready, the jamon is served thinly sliced, either on its own or with some good bread. Txanton, the first jamoneria in the Philippines, carries three kinds of jamon: Jamon Serrano, Jamon Iberico, and Jamon Iberico de Bellota.
Jamon Serrano is made from white pigs. The main breed is Duroc. The word Serrano comes from a Spanish term “Serranias” which refers to the cold mountain areas. The curing period for the meat takes up to a minimum of twelve months and the flavors that this jamon exudes has a little bit of salty flavour but gives a pleasant finish.
Jamon Iberico comes from Iberian pig which is also well known as “pata negra” because of its black hoofs. After one to two months of being breast-fed, the pigs are fed with cereals, feeds, dried fruits and herbs until they reach more than 100 kilograms, fit for slaughter. The curing period takes up to a minimum of twenty-four months.
Jamon Iberico de Bellota is similar to the Jamon Iberico,but after the pigs reach 100 kilograms, they are brought to the mountains from November to February. The pigs are then allowed to gorge on a diet of fallen cork oak acorns in the autumn season, giving the meat a distinctive and rich taste—completely unique around the world. Unlike the Jamon Iberico, the pigs should reach 150 kilograms before slaughter. The meat is then salted, dried, and aged for a minimum of three years.
The Jamon Iberico de Bellota is also classified according to its denomination of origin, which gives its flavor different twists. Jamon from Guijuelo, Salamanca, the mildest taste; from Extremadura, the most aromatic; from Jabugo, Huelva, an intense taste; and from Pedroches, Cordoba, the longest finish with a hint of spices.
Wine and jamon is the heart and soul of Txanton. Now, imagine a place here in the Philippines where you can have a taste of all these varieties of jamon paired with the finest, well-curated wines—and that is exactly the unique experience Txanton has brought to the country.