Written by Leska Tomash – The passion, dedication and skill of the Sanchez family date back to the late 19th century when they started to cure pork in the Candelario mountains of Spain—the legendary site of production for the hams and sausage of the Royal House of Spain. Later, the Sanchez family established their Iberian meat company in Campillo de Salvatierra. And later still, the company was relocated to Guijuelo (where it remains today) to nurture the vision of increased networking and communication and to bring the best Iberian pork products to the Spanish market. Today the fourth generation family company remains dedicated to their mission.
Most Iberico de Bellota producers only provide one year of acorn feeding known as La Montanera, but Arturo Sanchez Iberian pigs get two long seasons of grazing on holm oak and cork oak acorns in their natural habitat, the arid Dehesa fields to the north of Seville. Expert breeders tend to the pigs in the Dehesa from dusk til dawn, ensuring the animals are fed properly and allowed to roam freely. The pork meat is naturally cured for a minimum of 48 months in drying sheds. The cold, dry wind of the Bejar and Gredos mountains flow through the open sheds and work their “magic.” The meat has tasting notes of fresh nuts with an excellent balance of salt with light and clear sweet notes. Not only is the flavor unparalleled, the antioxidant capacity is almost double that of single-season acorn-fed pigs. It possesses fully developed muscle and bone mass with healthy fat infiltration, which provides a high level of healthy, flavorful oleic acid—surpassed only by olive oil.