This week has been a seriously busy and exciting one for the UK wine trade with the International Fair taking place at London’s Kensington Olympia, numerous awards ceremonies, new product launches and last but not least and the focus of my blog today – it’s Sherry week!
I have long been an admirer of this unique and diverse wine region which is capable of producing some of the most exciting and expressive wines the world has to offer. Sherry hails from Andalucía down in southern Spain but more specifically form vineyards planted close to the town Jerez de la Frontera. The main grape variety used to make Sherry is Palomino, a white varietal which is low in acidity, low in sugar and susceptible to quick oxidation. These are all important characteristics and play a vital role in the creation of Spain’s amazing fortified beverage.
Sherry is available in a variety of styles and there are a number of excellent ‘houses’, like in Champagne, producing a wide range of styles. We work with Bodegas Fernando de Castilla who are one of the best in the business. Fernando de Castilla was revitalised in the late 90’s by Jan Peterson, a legend when it comes to producing and ageing very fine Sherry. They focus on unfiltered and untreated styles so the bottled Sherry’s are as close to tasting from the barrels they age in.
If you are not familiar with Sherry then I urge you to give it a go. Personally I think the best place to start is to grab yourself a bottle of Fino, Fernando de Castilla Classic Fino is ideal. If you want to understand why this is such a popular drink, then you should do as the locals do and sort a selection of olives, a bowl of salted almonds, some manchego cheese and some serrano ham and find out what all the fuss is about!
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