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A culinary treat with the taste of the dehesa

Iberico Ham

Discover all our Iberico hams

One taste of FISAN Iberico ham is enough to want to repeat the experience of enjoying a gourmet product with the flavour of the dehesa and the pigmeat processing tradition. What lingers on the most are the reminiscences of flavours and aromas. Relive such moments while you enjoy this extraordinary selection of Iberico hams. True delights to the palate!

100% Iberico Bellota Ham Hand-sliced FISAN

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100% Iberico Bellota Ham Hand-sliced Deluxe

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Iberico Bellota Ham 75% Iberian Breed Hand-sliced

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Iberico Bellota Ham 75% Iberian Breed Hand-sliced Deluxe

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Iberico Bellota Ham 50% Iberian Breed Hand-sliced

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Iberico Bellota Ham 50% Iberian Breed Hand-sliced Deluxe

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Cebo de Campo Iberico Ham 50% Iberian Breed Hand-sliced

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jamón de bellota: preguntas frecuentes

The 11 most frequently asked questions about Iberico ham

Iberico ham is any of the two hind legs of the Iberian breed pig. To qualify as Iberico, the pig must be at least 50% pure Iberian breed. To talk about Iberico pig is to refer to a native racial grouping of several strains that make up the so-called Iberico branch.

Iberico ham is highly appreciated in Spanish cuisine. Some of its characteristics make it a very special delicacy:

  • Powerful flavour and aftertaste full of intense nuances
  • Soft and juicy texture
  • Unmistakable aroma
  • Vibrant red colour: red tones that range from violet to pink
  • Melt-in-the-mouth fat marbling

In addition to the notes that define it after the elaboration and curing process, Iberico ham is also special because of its origin. This culinary delight comes from Iberico branch pigs that provide it with value and lineage, making it a true gastronomic jewel.

Iberico 100% is used for products from pure Iberian race pigs. This means that the specimen’s parents are also Iberico 100%.

In the case of ham and shoulder ham, according to the Iberico Standard, bellota Iberico 100% shoulder hams and hams are identified with the black-coloured seal.

There is an Iberico ham typology that is regulated by the Iberico Standard and defined by the pig’s diet and its Iberian race percentage. The guidelines are gathered in Royal Decree 4/2014, which approves the quality standard for Iberico meat, shoulder ham, loin and ham.

The mentioned regulations define four types of Iberico that differentiate from each other by the colour of their seal. This colour code helps to identify both the Iberico quality and the diet of the pig the product comes from, as well as the Iberian race.

Thus, there are four varieties of Iberico ham:

  • Black seal Iberico ham. Iberico 100% ham where it is guaranteed that both of the pig’s parents are 100% Iberian breed. The quality of this ham is supported by the fact that at the height of the fattening season, the animal has exclusively fed on bellotas and has freely ranged the dehesas. At FISAN the curing period for this ham lasts over 42 months.
  • Red seal Iberico ham. This category identifies Iberico hams from pigs whose mother is 100% Iberian breed that are crossbred with Duroc breed pigs. As with black-label ham, the pig that this type of ham comes from also feeds on bellotas during the full montanera period. After 42 months in FISAN’s cellars, it is ready to be enjoyed.
  • Green seal campo Iberico ham. It can be 100%, 75% or 50% Iberian breed. The main difference between this type of Iberico ham and the other two is that the specimen has been fattened with natural pastures and feeding stuffs on the field. Green seal ham is cured for a minimum of 28 months.
  • Cebo Iberico ham. It comes from Iberian race pigs that have been fed exclusively with feeding stuffs in farms. FISAN does not produce this type of ham.

The main difference is that the term Iberico ham stresses origin, meaning the Iberian race that the pig belongs to, which makes it 100%, 75% or 50% Iberico.

On the other hand, bellota ham refers to the pig’s diet during the montanera period as well as to how the animal has lived, freely roaming the dehesa.

It must be specified that all bellota ham is Iberico. The Iberico Standard has two seals, black and red, for bellota ham, and it always comes from Iberico pigs that have had access to bellotas during the montanera, which defines their quality according to their diet.

At FISAN the Iberico origin of our pigs and careful attention to their diet come together in the preparation of top-quality products such as bellota 100% Iberico ham.

Serrano ham comes from white pigs, unlike Iberico ham, which is obtained from black or red pigs of what is known as Iberico breed. Added to this distinguishing characteristic are others such as:

  • Curing period
  • Amount of fat marbling
  • How the pig has lived
  • Flavour, colour and aroma

Iberico ham is healthier for the body than serrano ham since it is characterized by its high protein, vitamin and mineral content, as well as by its fatty acid supply, which is recommended for cardiovascular disease prevention.

Iberico pigs’ natural diet and way of living make Iberico hams stand out for the amount of trace elements, antioxidants and healthy fats they provide.

Although serrano ham is also notable for its protein supply, the truth is that Iberico ham is healthier thanks to its fat marbling, which can be noticed in its fine streaks, and other essential nutrients.

Knowing how to identify whether a ham is Iberico before opening it and at a glance is not difficult: all you have to do is look at the colour of the seal that goes on the hoof. It is Iberico ham if it is marked with one of the following colours:

  • Black for 100% Iberico ham.
  • Red for 75% and 50% Iberian breed ham.
  • Green on cebo de campo Iberico ham, either 100%, 75% or 50 % Iberico.

Once opened and sliced, recognizing Iberico ham is easy:

  • Fine streaks of fat marbling when cut
  • Intense flavour and powerful aroma
  • Juicy and melt-in-the-mouth texture
  • Bright colour
  • Oily and shiny appearance

The racial origin of the pig from which Iberico ham is produced is a quality mark. As well as checking the colour of the Iberico ham’s seal, there are other signs that show whether an Iberico ham is good.

  • Curing time from 28 months to the minimum 42 months required for bellota 100% Iberico hams.
  • Leg shape: elongated, around 90 cm long with a slender loin.
  • Origin: Guijuelo’s pork meat processing tradition is synonymous with delicious, top-quality hams such as those produced by FISAN, a flavour and know-how guarantee.

Spain’s best Iberico ham is produced in Guijuelo, a town in Salamanca with a long pork meat tradition and the cradle of the cellars where unique gastronomic pieces such as FISAN’s Iberico hams are cured.

Extraordinary Iberico hams that come from Iberian race pigs reared in dehesas located in:

  • Extremadura.
  • Area of Los Pedroches, in Córdoba
  • Sierra de Aracena, between Huelva and Seville

These areas are located in the Peninsular inland and stand out for their vast extensions that provide Iberico pigs with shelter and food. The dehesa is their natural hábitat, a unique and perfect space with everything that is needed for the animal’s fattening:

  • A natural environment that favours foraging and freedom of movement
  • Holm oak forests with plenty of bellotas
  • Optimal rearing conditions

From the ideal environment provided by the dehesa until they reach Guijuelo, where Spain’s best ham is produced and cured in FISAN’s natural drying rooms.

An Iberico ham usually yields between 40 and 50% of its total weight. This means that after cutting an approximately 7.5 kg FISAN Iberico ham into fine slices, it yields around 3 kg net of ham.

To learn the yield of a ham it is necessary to know the meat percentage with respect to the following parts:

  • Bone
  • Fat
  • Rind that covers the piece

To make good choices when buying Iberico ham, you must bear in mind that:

  • FISAN’s sliced Iberico ham allows you to effortlessly enjoy the ham.
  • Large hams yield more than smaller ones.
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