This is a really interesting new release by Barbadillo. Love the name: at first I thought the shepherdess in question was the great Montse Molina but I gather it is a reference to a historic Barbadillo wine – the Divina Pastora (the first manzanilla released by Barbadillo, in 1827).
Whoever it is named after it is a really top drawer wine and another demonstration of the qualities of a manzanilla pasada. Barbadillo’s Solear en Rama are of course of the highest order (and someone once told me they were technically pasadas) but this is quite different – whereas the Solear are full of zest and life this is elegant and mineral, with a floral, green apple and sea air nose and an illusion of green apples on the palate and a smooth, compact salinity. (I say illusion in homage to the discussion we had while we drinking it – the issue of where this fruit comes from in manzanilla pasadas is fascinating.)
Lovely in fact. A fitting wine for such a famous name.
[Having bumped in to Armando Guerra at a recent Lavinia sherry palooza I can update this note slightly – it appears that this spends six years in the Solear solera and bodega before spending an additional three in the bodega of the Solear en rama. It really is intriguing how the fruit profile of this contrasts with the mineral and vegetable power of the Solear en rama.]