What would you pay for the best leg of Jamon in the world? Let me give you some clues as to the value. Senor Donato, the farmer or perhaps guardian is a better word, has a moto “patience, passion and pleasure” it could be a hint at the time factor involved in producing one of his hams.
He’s just won the Biofach award for his ham which is a bit like the organic Oscars, only much better. The jamon comes from the Manchado de Jabugo pig which Senor Donato along with some of his fellow villages saved from extinction over the last 25 years, so they are rare but now classed as saved.
The species, eats only natural produce, living in woods around the village of Cortegana, in southwestern Spain’s Huelva province. He produces only 40 pigs per year and there’s no guarentee they will all make the grade, so lets say 74 jamons per year. It takes three years of love and care to grow a pig to maturity. Donato looks after his pigs like few other farmers, sometimes sitting among them while they bathe and drink amid the fast-running streams of the Sierra de Aracena and Picos de Aroche UNESCO biosphere reserve.
Aside from traditional veterinary treatments, Donato’s animals are also treated by a homoeopathist, who cures cuts and grazes with a mixture of extra virgin olive oil and ash from the holm oaks that populate the hills of Huelva. They are de-wormed and treated for parasites with a special recipe made from mint and sunflower seeds.
These are no ordinary porkers even by the living standards of Iberico pigs these fellas are an expensive date.
So what will it cost you for an Eduardo Donato’s “Jamon Dehesa Maladúa” How about £3200? I’m sure it’s worth every penny if you can afford it, if you can’t and you’d like to try some quailty at an affordable price look here and here
I don’t want to seem tight but I bought one in Lidl this month April 2016 and it was £30 and once rested tastes great.