Sherry is quite special, and drinking an old Amontillado seems entirely appropriate on the first day of 2019. [And this reminds me, I haven’t yet done a post of new year resolutions, predictions for 2019, or taken an introspective look at 2018 and its difficulties and triumphs, and that sort of thing. Maybe later.]
I found myself drinking sherry with food last night, and it was a really good experience. I’d also had sherry with food a couple of nights ago, and enjoyed it equally. So maybe I should be drinking more sherry with food. [Just a thought: I’ve always liked the idea of it, but never really tried it all that much, for reasons that remain inexplicable to me.] This wine is one of the more affordable expressions of VORS Amontillado: it’s not cheap, but it is really good value, as a bottle can last quite a while, and it’s beautifully complex.
Gonzalez Byass Del Duque Amontillado VORS Jerez, Spain
21.5% alcohol. This is VORS, which means the average age of sherries in the blend is 30 years or more, and considering the age of this wine, it’s one of the best value examples of its type. Age is the magic ingredient with many sherries: with the exception of purely biologically aged wines (finos and manzanillas), it’s age that brings the real complexity. This would have started life as a Fino, and you still get the ghost of the salty tang of biological ageing under flor here. It’s supplemented with astonishing nutty, woody complexity and a hint of smoke, as well as some tar and treacle notes in the background. Lovely old wood characters dominate, with some furniture polish notes. Dry, intense and exotic, with such a range of layered flavours and an eternal finish, with concentrated acidity as well. 94/100 (For a half bottle, £20.95 The Whisky Exchange, Oddbins, Hennings, Oxford Wine Co)