Last 16th of February, the presentation of the ham many consider as the best ham in the world (in any case, the most exclusive one) was organized in the Hotel NH Atlanta in Brussels, since it is produced by “Dehesa Maladúa” made from the “Manchado de Jabugo”; a special variety of the Iberian Ham that Eduardo Donato created in Sierra de Aracena (Huelva). A ham that, in addition to its incomparable flavor, has an Organic certification.
It was on his return from the Biofach Fair in Nuremberg, where he was present with a “stand”, that Eduardo Donato wanted to share with us his excellent ham and the rest of his products, including a unique cream of sobrasada bio with Jerez’s wine Pedro Ximénez.
The tasting also included a lecture by Ramon Jiménez Fraile, member of the company specialized in controlled-temperature storage Friologic, who talked about the characteristics of the Iberian ham and the Spanish legislation in the field of ham. Because of this new legislation, Jiménez Fraile explained, the expression “Pata Negra” can only be used when referring to hams made from Iberian pigs fed in freedom only with acorns and also having a 100% racial purity, as in the case of Dehesa Maladúa. With this legislation, only hams from this type of pigs can have a black seal, while those who have lower quality have a white, green or red seal, and cannot use the expression “Pata Negra”.
The lecture also explained the unorthodox marketing practices around the Iberian pig, the confusion of the consumers and the attitude of the well-known producers that work outside the protected designation of origin.
This prestigious ham has several years of history behind it. Encouraged by environmental and conservation considerations of quality of life, Eduardo Donato settled 25 years ago in the village of Jabugo (Huelva), where he founded “Dehesa Maladúa” and which has 700 hectares in the Natural Park of Sierra Aracena, biosphere preserved by UNESCO.
With both the variety of “Manchado de Jabugo” (easily recognisable by their distinctive stains) and the traditional “Capa Negra”, Eduardo Donato has conquered the palates as he did with the filmmaker Bigas Luna, director of the film “Jamón, Jamón”, interpreted by Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem.