SHERRY FESTIVAL, Barcelona
From May 15 to 23, sponsored by the Regulatory Council for Sherry and Manzanilla wines, an interesting experience was held in Barcelona to publicize and promote the great oenological jewels and exclusive wines produced in this Denomination of Origin (D.O.), the first and consequently the oldest in Spain.
The SHERRY FESTIVAL, also held previously in Madrid, had numerous presentation events and tastings for the general public. Among the different events organized, the tasting that was held on May 20 at the old Moritz brewery stood out, in which one of the oldest wineries in that important wine region in the south and by extension in all of Spain, BODEGAS TRADICION, founded in 1650, offered an exquisite presentation and tasting of four of its wines: a Fino, and Oloroso, a Palo Cortado and a Pedro Ximénez.
Bodegas Tradición is the only winery in Jerez dedicated exclusively to the oldest wines, cataloged as V.O.S. (Very Old Sherry, aged over 20 years) and V.O.R.S. (Very Old Rare Sherry, over 30 years old). This characteristic means that the production of said winery is limited to a very specific number of bottles, which can range from 2,500 to 6,000 at most per year, depending on the type of wine to be bottled.
Three of the wines tasted were 100% white wines made, naturally, with the grape variety Palomino fino, the very one with which Jerez wines are made. The fourth wine tasted a Pedro Ximénez, logically it was elaborated 100% from the grape variety of the same name.
All the wines are bottled in 75 cl. Jerez bottles, duly sealed and numbered, thus preserving the quality and exclusivity of the excellent wines they contain.
It should also be noted that they are fortified wines and that (given their long aging period) they have undergone a long oxidative process, so once the bottle is opened, there is no they will lose none of their properties and will remain in perfect condition for at least 12 months, as long as the bottle is kept in an upright position.
So, when opening one of these bottles, it is convenient to savor it and enjoy it little by little in order to fully appreciate the fantastic characteristics that it offers us. It must be borne in mind that as they are fortified wines, these generally have a higher alcohol content (15% to 20% alcohol) so they should be consumed with some moderation, unless we want to do so, in the good sense of the word. word, a Jerez party in style.
Finally, indicate that they should be tasted and/or drunk in a large Burgundy-type glass, in order to fully appreciate and enjoy all of them.
Variety: Palomino Fino 100%
Average age: 10-12 years
Serving temperature: from 8° to 12°. If it is served very cold (8°- 9°), it can lose certain aromas and some flavor, gaining a great freshness on the palate.
Bottle price: €25.90
This is a fully mature white wine, the result of long aging and fermentation under flor veil in American oak casks using the solera and criaderas system.
Of the wines tasted, this is the one with the lowest alcoholic strength (15%, the minimum alcoholic strength allowed by the Regulatory Council), but despite this we found a wine with body, of an intense golden color, full-bodied and with very intense and powerful aromas, somewhat salty and with a long finish of bitter touches on the palate.
This is a very typical and traditional fino. A quality old fine wine, which combines purity and tradition in its production, as the name of the winery that produces it already indicates.
Pairing: A wine highly recommended as an aperitif to combine with nuts or pickles. It will also go perfectly with any type of seafood or fish-based dish.
Oloroso Tradition V.O.R.S.
Variety: 100% Palomino Fino
Average age: 45 years
Serving temperature: From 12° to 14°
Bottle price: €48.90
This exceptional oloroso is the result of prolonged aging in wood of wine from palomino grapes that never had a flor veil. Many years as a vintage and many more through the criaderas and soleras system produce a wine of an intense mahogany color with copper tones, with a toasted aroma of wood or cocoa and powerful balsamic notes. It has a pleasant, fatty and unctuous beginning on the palate, to later show us its power and body, noticing at the end on the palate in a more appreciable way the already initially perceived touch of somewhat bitter cocoa.
This is a wine with balsamic notes, a sweet aroma and highly evolved vinosity. Powerful, harmonious and with great persistence on the palate, all due to the concentration of its components, which after more than forty years of aging give it that intensity and complexity of aromas.
Pairing: Powerful wine that can be taken as an aperitif with strong and cured cheeses or Iberian products. It can also combine well with hearty meat stews.
Palo Cortado Vintage 1975
Variety: 100% Palomino Fino
Average age: 32 years
Serving temperature: From 10° to 12°
Bottle price: €63.40
This is a unique sherry, an oenological rarity. Delicate and elegant on the nose, structured and powerful on the palate, making it a wine of great complexity that combines the aromatic finesse of an Amontillado and the corpulence on the palate of an Oloroso. Palo Cortado therefore comes from a very special selection of wines and is the result of a whim of nature that, after prolonged aging in American oak casks where it develops its atypical characteristics, finally gives rise to this very exclusive and rare wine.
In the glass we observe a wine with an amber color and extraordinary complexity in the aromas, with hints of bitter almond and sea. On the palate it is a light and round wine at the entrance, pungent and saline afterwards and with a somewhat bitter final aftertaste.
Pairing: Ideal wine to accompany Iberian products (ham, loin…) and also nuts (fried almonds, cashews… ) But it is unbeatable when combined with foie, both fresh and mi-cuit, oysters, sashimi and fish sushi.
Pedro Ximénez Tradition V.O.S.
Variety: Pedro Ximénez 100%
Average age: 22 years
Serving temperature: From 8° to 15°. Like the Fino, if it is served very cold (8° to 10°), we can lose some aroma and flavor.
Bottle Price: €57.90
This Pedro Ximénez is obtained from the grape variety of the same name, which is subjected to sunbathing (the grapes are dehydrated in the sun) to allow their raisining. In the vinification, a very sweet must is obtained whose fermentation is paralyzed by alcoholization and which, after prolonged aging in American oak barrels, results in a wine of a very dark ebony color with dense iodized rims, raisin aromas, toasted tones. and sweet taste like caramel and honey. On the palate it is an unctuous, velvety, tasty wine, with great persistence and a balanced sweetness that does not cloy.
Pairing: It is an ideal sweet wine for desserts, combining perfectly with chocolates, sweets as well as creamy cakes or cakes. Finally, note that it can be surprising with blue cheeses such as Roquefort or Gorgonzola.
Highlighting for our part the great quality of all the wines tasted; quality and exclusivity that are already endorsed to a certain extent in their price. We are, therefore, before some products that we can define as “meditation”, ideal for slow tasting so that we can calmly immerse ourselves in the different nuances and harmonies that they offer us.
Another factor that endorses the high quality of the wines tasted is that all of them have a score of more than 90 points in the prestigious Parker Guide. Thus, Fino has a score of 92 out of 100; the Oloroso of 95 out of 100; the Palo Cortado of 94 out of 100 and the Pedro Ximénez of 92 out of 100.
To put a but to such a magnificent tasting, indicate that perhaps something is missing from the table to accompany these exceptional wines. A plate of Iberian ham would have been fantastic, LOL, but we already understand that it was asking too much. However, as a counterpart, some cured cheese or simply some nuts would have already been more than enough to value and contrast in a more effective and pleasant way all the great properties of the wines presented.
However, it is worth thanking Bodegas Tradición for the opportunity offered to all those present to be able to enjoy exclusive wines (30 to 45 years of aging), which are normally not they are usually available to the general public.
Arias & Ortiz