The big wine-growing activity in Tomelloso since the second half of the 19th century made it necessary to find an outlet for the production of wine. So, in addition to the wineries, some distilleries began to appear in the town. The distillation of wine to obtain alcohol is a process that is carried out through copper and stainless steel columns and pipes.
The chimneys of more than 20 metres were located next to the large distillation towers and were used for the extraction of the smoke from the large boilers, because of their height they exerted a strong suction and raised it high enough so that it did not fall to the ground and blacken everything.
The lower ones, under 20 metres high, extracted the smoke from small machines used to make distillates and spirits, whose distillation was often made by using wood as fuel instead of coal, which has a blacker and denser smoke.
Around 1950 there were 60 distilleries and up to 100 chimneys in Tomelloso. Nowadays, 19 large and 13 small ones are preserved.
With the development of the wine trade between the Mediterranean countries and those of northern Europe, distillation reached its maximum peak. It is used for:
– Preserve wines during the long voyages, alcohol from distilled wines was added to the wines.
– Spirits based on the distillation of distilled wine were also sold.
The construction of chimneys of 20 metres or more was reserved for highly specialised masters because, in addition to their extraction function, they were the most emblematic and beautiful elements of the distillery. The material used was brick of the best quality and special mortar (made of sand, lime and cement) to withstand the high temperatures. The families known as the Goig and Jareño families were the main builders of these towers.
- Address: Different locations in the town | Tomelloso
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