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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Skinny Dipping – Calzo della Vignia 2015 & Azienda Agricola Casale Trebbiano 2004

Amongst the world’s oldest wine making regions, Tuscany is widely renowned for historic Chianti estates, many nowadays producing on an industrial scale. But look a little deeper and you’ll find numerous innovative winemakers returning to traditional methods and forgotten varieties, to produce intriguing and beguiling wines. Two mavericks in the region are island newcomers Castellari Isola del Giglio and historic Azienda Agricola Casale, both of whom follow minimal intervention philosophies to make long skin maceration ‘orange’ wines.

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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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Tasting Cruz Vieja Sherries at Bodegas Faustino Gonzalez

Former Almacenista turned boutique Bodega, Faustino Gonzalez have been a family operation since being established in 1971. Their traditional methods, including barrel fermented base wines made with grapes from their own superb albariza vineyards, and exceptionally old soleras dating from 1758, produce exquisite sherries. A tiny bodega, passionately making fabulous sherry the way it should be.

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Skinny Dipping – Alfredo Maestro Tejero ‘Lovamor’ Albillo 2016

Sensible haircut and conservative demeanour, Alfredo appears the antithesis of a maverick winemaker, but this self taught winemaker’s ‘natural’ wines tell a different tale. While most Ribera del Duero winemakers are preoccupied with making robust reds from Tinto Fino, he’s sought out neglected parcels of rare old vine varieties, including his ‘Lovamor’ Albillo, a funky and textural, yet refined expression of terroir and winemaker.

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Ximénez Spínola Exceptional Harvest & Fermentation Lenta 2015

Bodegas Ximénez Spínola are something of an idiosyncrasy in Jerez, notable for making all their wines from Pedro Ximénez, in a region where Palomino is the predominate grape variety, with an unusual range of wines to match. A firm believer in Pedro Ximénez’s reputed Riesling ancestry, José Antonio has been inspired to make with it two unfortified dry vintage white wines, adapting the winemaking methods of the German Rhein to his native Jerez.

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Thousand Candles 2012

Named after the musings of a nineteenth century European settler on observing an aboriginal ceremony, made by a renowned Aussie winemaker who has been inspired by Pinot Noir’s Burgundian heartland from an idiosyncratic blend of grapes, and grown on vineyards owned by a nameless mega wealthy Singaporean businessman who’s never visited, Thousand Candles has an intriguing backstory.

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