There is a Galician saying that roughly translates as “At San Martiño the magosto is done with roast chestnuts and young wine”. And in Ourense they follow it to the letter. Originally, the magosto was a celebration based around a fire and roast chestnuts that Galicians held to honour the harvest. A fire on the cold nights of early November encouraged people to tell stories and old legends. Groups of friends also hold magostos at night with fires outdoors, chestnuts, baked chorizo, young red wine, songs, and stories to continue the tradition. The individual elements of the tradition, including the queimada drink, are purifying symbols of life.
The unique, deep-rooted nature of the Ourense magosto, which takes place on the feast day of San Martin de Tours (the patron saint of the city), saw it become a Galician Festival of Tourist Interest in 2008. The crackle of chestnuts in the fire is heard all over the city, as this spontaneous folk tradition is celebrated in different neighbourhoods, the Alameda park, and the surrounding mountains.