Vintages past, present, and future

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My latest post for the sherry.wine site went up this week and, having eliminated the typos, it is my pleasure to share the link here.

This is one of my obsessions – the more I drink and read about these wines the more I am convinced of the value of this kind of differentiation (and if you don’t believe me just see my posts from September and February, amongst others). More importantly, it is apparently a historic reality – here the experts are the so called “Sobrinos de Haurie“, who are working on an exciting new history of the vintage wines of the region.

The making of these vintage wines is, however, more limiting than I had previously thought. I had the great fortune recently to attend a wine tasting of some really spectacular vintage Montilla Moriles wines in Taberna Palo Cortado and one of the issues that came up that night was that the Montilla Moriles wines had been “moved”, i.e., the barrels had been refreshed from other barrels of the same vintage. This is apparently something I understand would not be permitted in a “vintage” sherry, where a seal is attached to the barrels, and only broken on bottling (or something along those lines). In fact, the “movement” caused some consternation among those present.

All I can say is that the results were first class, and on discussing it with Antonio Barbadillo (whose Sacristia AB series is synonymous with some little gems) he also appeared to be convinced of the need to “move” wines for a number of reasons. Of course it was a tiny sample of 60 year old wines and we only tasted one side of the argument, but it struck me as an interesting issue that might usefully be reconsidered.

For now, though, I repeat my promise of February: make me a vintage sherry and trust me, I will buy it!

 

 

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