A brilliant fino sherry from El Maestro Sierra

I’m a big sherry fan, as I think most of my wine nut friends are. Great sherry is one of the most affordable of all fine wines, which is a good thing. This little gem is from El Maestro Sierra, a small sherry house owned by the nonagenarian Pilar Pla Pechovierto, and is very traditional. [...]

A remarkable evening of wine, with Burgundy, the Wachau, the northern Rhone, Champagne and Sherry

Had a fabulous dinner last night at Francis and Bronwen Percival’s pad in Borough Market with a group of wine nuts, including a Burgundy-resident Californian winemaker. Some lovely bottles came out, and Francis and Bronwen’s cooking was on top form.

We started with some cheese, of course: Stawley, Kirkham’s Lancashire and Citeaux (a washed-rind cow’s milk [...]

Hidalgo La Gitana Manzanilla en Rama

Now this is interesting. Remember all the fuss about the Gonzalez Byas Tio Pepe Fino en Rama? It was a special bottling of Fino straight from the cask, and it was fabulous.

Sherry like this is normally filtered and fined to stabilize it for commercial release. The great thing about en rama is that the wine [...]

Old VORS Sherries from Harveys

Old Sherry is fabulous. It is one of the wine world’s great treasures, although it doesn’t really get the limelight that it deserves.

Here are three VORS wines from Harveys, which retail at £20.82 each for 50 cl. That’s not cheap, but these are very impressive, complex wines. All are available only from  www.thedrinkshop.com in the [...]

Video: Tio Pepe Fino En Rama

Here’s a short film of me tasting the new (2011) release of Gonzalez Byass’ Tio Pepe Fino En Rama. It’s a sherry taken from the cask in spring when the flor is at its thickest. It’s then bottled unfined and unfiltered for early drinking. Remarkable stuff.

Running a Sherry and Port class

This morning I headed into London to run a Sherry and Port session for Hakkasan’s  (high-end London restaurant) staff training. It was an interesting class, and I was introducing most of the attendees (the majority of who are young people with English as a second language) to the wonderful world of these fortified wines for [...]

Tio Pepe Fino ‘En Rama’ – we like!

This is fantastic. It’s a special bottling of Gonzalez Byas’ Tio Pepe Fino Sherry, taken from the cask when the flor (the layer of yeast cells growing on the surface of the liquid) is at its thickest in Spain. It’s a thrillingly complex, slightly hazy Fino (it hasn’t been clarified or filtered) and it has [...]

Video: Fino Sherry is a perfect summer drink

Here’s a short film where I taste two rather good Fino sherries.

Making Sherry sexy: Equipo Navazos

Equipo Navazos make mindblowing Sherries. I’m drinking one at the moment, and it’s a life-enhancing experience. It’s Manzanilla No 16 – powerful, intense with nuts, herbs, minerals, citrus notes and a distinct salty tang – even a hint of cheese. Complex and really hard to capture in words, this is one of two bottles kindly [...]

Sweet wine season, 9: Hidalgo Triana, an amazing PX sherry

This is amazing stuff. Totally mind-blowing. Very, very sweet and concentrated, but really complex, too.

Hidalgo Pedro Ximenez Triana VORS 30 Years Old Sherry
Amazing stuff: rich and intense with notes of treacle, tar, figs and raisins on the nose. The palate is viscous and intensely sweet with a lovely treacle and fig savouriness as well as [...]