I am discovering that Bilbao had a fair few attractions for a wine fan and one of them, if you love the wines of el marco, is Nerua.
A temple to good taste, with a Michelin Star and a star chef, it also has a fantastic range of top sherries. In fact the list is, in my view, just about perfect:
- a “protomanzanilla” in the form of La Bota de Florpower 53 ,
- manzanillas that are fresh and aromatic (Deliciosa, La Bota 32 and 55, La Guita en Rama, even the Manzanilla de Añada 2012 2/11 by Callejuela),
- three outstanding finos with a lot of character (Fino Perdido, La Panesa and the mighty Fino La Barajuela 2013),
- three top class manzanilla pasadas (La Goya XL, La Bota 60, and la Maruja),
- amontillados from the very top drawer (Piñero, La Sacristia AB, el Amontillado Olvidado, the Tradicion VORS and La Bota 49 (would love to hear what they pair that with)),
- a class Palo Cortado (Viejo CP by Valdespino),
- the cream of olorosos (Sacristia AB, Villapanes, and el Cerro), and
- the actual cream by Piñero.
It is a remarkable list – excellent all round and some top wines. There isn’t a single wine on there I wouldn’t order, some of them are unique and impossible to find and I am struggling to spot any flaw in the range (there may have been some pedro ximenez on a separate section of the wine list that I did not look at – apologies – but maybe if you wee very picky you could beg for some pedro ximenez options up and down the card).
And there are many other reasons to visit too – I couldn’t stop long yesterday but long enough to try three absolutely beautiful tapitas and enjoy a really friendly welcome. I will surely be back and I hope it is soon.