South of the City of León and north of Benavente in the northern reaches of the Duero River basin lies a high, windswept, barren, rolling landscape called ‘El Páramo.’ The contours of the low hills (oteros) provide adequate protection from the cold winds for the hearty, indigenous Prieto Picudo variety to survive. Extremely low-yielding and out of the limelight, the Prieto Picudo had been steadily uprooted in recent decades. In the early 2000s a project to purchase and resurrect the Prieto Picudo vineyards from near oblivion was undertaken, led by Pedro González Mittelbrunn, León native and Professor of Viticulture & Enology at the University of León. Pedro was instrumental in the creation of the D.O. Vinos de León. Prieto Picudo is an extremely dark-skinned variety with simultaneously high sugar, color/tannin and acid content with penetrating berry-like fruit expression. Perhaps there is no red grape in Spain with higher simultaneous concentrations of these critical components. It is a jewel of Spanish viticulture when obtained from mature vines, capable of delicious, intensely aromatic young wines as well as wines capable of long aging in oak and bottle.
The Leyenda del Páramo partnership was founded in 2009 to specialize in the production of wines from the indigenous varieties of the Páramo—Prieto Picudo for serious reds and rosado and the white Albarín for aromatic dry white.