Tonita mill. Industrial, cultural and gastronomic report
Applicant: Francisco Sola Sanchez.
Reason for the award :
The Jury appreciated how the project linked the preservation of an old mill with historical commerce and culinary experiences.
In addition to the comprehensive restoration of the mill and its revitalization as a restaurant, the project has also included the digitization of a historical archive of Murcian paprika brands.
The Tonita mill was built in the Murcian neighbourhood of Espinardo in 1926, the golden age of Murcian paprika when this region was the world’s leading producer. The ñoras, from which the paprika is extracted, were introduced in the 16th century from the American colonies by the Jesuits, settled in the neighbouring Jerónimos Monastery. The mill was acquired in 2001 to avoid demolition, and its structure consolidated in 2004. Three years later, the façade was restored, with the elimination of added elements. By 2012, the machinery had been recovered and its gastronomic use began. Currently, this entirely private initiative has managed to save the last existing Murcian paprika mill.