Already in St. Luke's Gospel (5:33-39) Jesus himself says that no new wine is to be poured into old wineskins, as if so
the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. Also adding "no one after drinking old wine wants the new, as
they will say that this old wine is indeed good". It is at this time of year that the days become shorter and the nightslonger, temperatures turn milder and finally the clusters of grapes reach their point of ripeness, swollen and full ofcolour, which is when the time for another harvest arrives that is to bring us the new wines, the same as those that werecommercialised until just a few decades ago throughout the land, because lengthy storage of wine during years maygive rise to problems in that pertaining to its control and storage
Use of wineskins for the transporting of wines as mentioned in the gospel has been taking place right into the20th Century, because with this method the wine is easily preserved, thanks to the "elasticity, manageability and adap-tation" of the wineskin, quite the contrary of the fragility of an earthenware jar or clay amphora, however, as remindedby the gospel, new wines must go into new wineskins because the power of its substances rips apart the used wines-kin. In the taverns that were to be found in the city of Toledo, as was likewise the case in many other Spanish cities,wine was supplied in these wineskins because the narrowness and relief of the terrains made use of wineskins inevita-ble, thus imparting an amalgam of flavours that would vary throughout the year, ranging from the freshness of its firstdays during the winter when the wine was still young, right through to the autumn when the wine would acquire avariety of rancid flavours due to its contact with the leather and tar of the skins, even though some did turn into won-derful aged wines, it was actually the least of them.
In the Quixote this is also true, as at the beginning of his knightly life he finds himself in a bit of a squabblein an inn with some hides, or rather wineskins, which "defenceless as they were" and hacked and driven through by hissword "deadly injured they bled" before the astonished surprise of the innkeeper who had them ready and stored forthe use and consumption of his clientele. Thus various important aspects for wine come together: conservation, whichthen gives rise to a series of qualities or to a quite different set of properties, and safer transport in order to travel longdistances along the difficult paths that wine for fast consumption had to cover between the taverns that were so dis-tant from each other, found along remote paths and far-removed from the cities. Storage provided a certain amount ofcomfort with regards to the fragile clay jars and their maintenance, as it was difficult to refill old used wineskins withnew wines, as these would rip apart, as I have already mentioned.