Port of Leith Distillery Oloroso Sherry from Bodegas Barón

A catch 22 in establishing a new Scotch whisky distillery is the requirement for the new make spirit to be matured for a minimum of 3 years in cask before release, while fending off a bank manager keen for his loan to be repaid. Rather than simply riding the the ubiquitous gin band wagon, the new Port of Leith Distillery being constructed in Edinburgh, have struck upon the idea of bottling the same Oloroso sherry to be used for seasoning their casks, sourced from Bodegas Barón in Sanlúcar.

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50 Years A Fino – Bottled 1967

A special bottle of Fino Sherry produced to mark the marriage of Doña Pilar and Luis Gomez in 1967, making this a Fino with 50 years in bottle. Would I want to drink the entire bottle, possibly not? Nevertheless a fantastic experience demonstrating how much potential biologically aged sherries have to develop in bottle over half a century.

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Vintage Sherry Two Ways – Williams Colección Añadas & 1980s Tío Pepe

Closed by the Consejo Regulador with a wax seal and red ribbon, Añada sherries, produced from a single vintage, have seen a renaissance in recent years. With an established tradition of vintage sherries from as far back as 1920, Williams & Humbert’s Colección Añadas is a new venture under oenologist Paola Medina, aiming to produce unusual biologically aged Añada sherries at an accessible price. From one vintage sherry to another, though this time not from a single vintage, is González Byass’ ubiquitous Tío Pepe, bottled in the 1980s, then aged for several further decades, giving an enlightening experience into how biologically aged sherries can develop in bottle.

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Viña Santa Petronila Fino & Cream En Rama

Claiming to be the smallest, and unequivocally one of the smallest bodegas in the Marco de Jerez, Viña Santa Petronila is within a stones throw of Jerez , surrounded its own old vine albariza vineyards. Norwegians Brita Hektoen and husband Agustín are the current custodians of this Casa de la Viña, catering for events and accommodating guests, alongside operating a working bodega where they produce superb but extremely limited wines.

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Rising Sanluqueña Stars – Manzanilla Sacristía AB & Velo Flor

While many Sherry houses can trace their roots back hundreds of years, Antonio Barbadillo Mateos and Bodegas Alonso are amongst a few rising stars defying convention with fantastic results. The work of Antonio Barbadillo Mateos, of the Barbadillo dynasty, Sacristía AB is a Manzanilla de autor, bottled from a selection of butts at Bodegas Yuste. At Bodegas Alonso, the wealthy Asencio brothers eventually plan to bottle Manzanilla offering beginning to end, vineyard to bottle traceability, but for now, Manzanilla Velo Flor is an astonishing creation from bought in wines.

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Tasting Entusiástico Manzanilla and Goya XL at Delgado Zuleta

Claiming to be the oldest bodega still active today, Delgado Zuleta’s story begins in the 18th century, passing through family hands and surviving mergers along the way. Widely known for their ubiquitous flagship Manzanilla, named after the  famous flamenco dancer Aurora Jauffre ‘La Goya’, Delgado Zuleta have today ventured into more innovative releases. Bottled under cork in a conventional clear glass wine bottle, their Entusiástico Manzanilla encourages people to enjoy as they would any other unfortified wine, and challenges the perception that sherry can’t age. Their sought after Goya XL needs no introduction.

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Bodegas César Florido Fino En Rama

Located on the coast, south west of Sanlúcar, Chipiona’s sandy soils largely are dedicated to growing Moscatel. Only a stone’s throw from the Atlantic ocean, Chipiona’s climate allows the flor to grow year round, making its Finos particularly unique. Bodegas César Florido is the only bodega in Chipiona to export any sherry, and with the single Bota No. 22 providing only 600 halves to go round, their Fino En Rama is a rare opportunity to taste a Chipiona Fino.

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Visiting Bodegas Urium

Alonso Ruiz Olivares never forgot his dream of becoming a sherry bodeguero for over 40 years, finally being realised when he bought a small bodega in 2007, renaming it Mons Urium. Sherry is a contagious condition, and so much like Alonso’s father before him, daughter Rocío Ruiz caught the bug. Devoted to the bodega and passionate about the wines they produce, Alonso and daughter Rocío are extremely generous hosts who welcomed us as friends to their bodega.

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Sanlúcar Bota’s from La Guita & Navazos

Manzanilla, bone dry and saline, with intensity and finesse from ageing under flor in the bodegas of Sanlúcar de Barrameda. Three wines from the bodegas Hijos de Rainera Pérez Marín, starting with the en rama release of the ubiquitous La Guita Manzanilla (with a little bottle age), then thanks to sherry aficionados Navazos, two fabulous wines with obvious Sanluqueña origins, the La Bota No. 59 Manzanilla Pasada and La Bota No. 58 Amontillado. Priceless? You decide, but undoubtedly worth mucho guita.

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