International Sherry Week, 2-8 November 2020

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Sherry Week 2020

International Sherry Week, 2-8 November 2020 International Sherry Week takes place between 2-8 November 2020. Time once again to celebrate Spain’s great gift to the world! There are the floral delights of a chilled Manzanilla or Fino. Or try the nutty notes of an Amontillado and Oloroso. Add the umami flavours of Palo Cortado, or the sweet caramel of PX. …

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Pasión de Bobal Rosado – Last of the Summer Wine

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Pasión de Bobal Rosado

Pasión de Bobal Rosado – Last of the Summer Wine The late August Bank Holiday in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, is held on the last Monday of the August. It represents the last gasp of the Summer holidays*.  After this comes the Great Return; whether to work, to college or school. Who hasn’t had cause to dread that dreary prospect? And …

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Txakoli: The Drunkard, Zarauz, by Joaquín Sorolla

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Txakoli: The Drunkard, Zaruatz, by Joaquín Sorolla

Txakoli: The Drunkard, Zarauz, by Joaquín Sorolla Most of the time, it’s the wine itself that inspires the desire for writing about it. However, at other times inspiration comes courtesy of an entirely different subject. This time is one such, where Art has inspired the desire to write about a less well-known and unique Spanish white wine called Txakoli. The Drunkard, …

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Pedro Ximénez: Discover the Joy of PX

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Montilla-Moriles DO PX

Pedro Ximénez: Discover the Joy of PX Pedro Ximénez (PX) is both a Spanish white grape variety and a particular style of super-sweet dessert wine. PX (the grape) is grown in many Spanish regions and occasionally elsewhere. However, the most outstanding examples of PX (the wine) are arguably from the inland Andalusian wine region of Montilla-Moriles DO. It’s some 45 …

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At Jerez, by Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy

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At Jerez, by Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy Dame Carol Ann Duffy is a Scottish poet and playwright. She became the 20th official Poet Laureate in May 2009 until her ten-year fixed-term ended in May 2019. During this time she excelled as a great ambassador for poetry and wrote the poem called At Jerez. As is traditional, part-payment for the …

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Colet Navazos Extra Brut, original and brilliant fizz

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Colet Navazos Extra Brut 2015

Colet Navazos Extra Brut, original and brilliant fizz Regular readers will know of my love of Sparkling wine and Sherry. They are two unique wine styles with entirely different origins. Two methods defined by their complicated production and maturation processes. They couldn’t be more different from one another. Poles apart, you might say. But what if someone was bonkers enough …

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Pla de Bages and its unique heritage

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Abadal winery workers, Pla de Bages

Pla de Bages and its unique heritage These days, Pla de Bages is a rather obscure Spanish wine region in the heart of Catalonia, Spain. Yet winegrowing has been here since Roman times, and the word Bages comes from Bacchus, the Roman God of wine. North-west of Barçelona, this fascinating region occupies the valleys of two rivers, the Llobregat and …

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WOTY 2019: Llopart Original 1887

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WOTY 2019: Llopart Original 1887 Brut Nature Gran Reserva

WOTY 2019: Llopart Original 1887 Being January 1st 2020, it’s time for the Wine of the Year 2019. Of course, during 2019 there were some outstanding candidates.  Each one brought great pleasure and taught something new.  But the moment I tasted this Espumosos (sparkling wine) at Llopart in Catalonia, I was convinced it would be WOTY 2019. However, a visit to …

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Altanza Rioja – Rioja Crianza and Reserva

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Bodegas Altanza Rioja Alta

Altanza – Rioja Crianza and Reserva Bodegas Altanza makes fine examples of Rioja made in the modern style. Huge investment in winegrowing is now producing wines that highlight fresh fruit flavours rather than the traditional oak-dominant wines of yore. Neither style is necessarily better, but as a wine drinker, it’s great to have the choice. Altanza is a relatively young company, established …

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Llopart – fine bubbles from Catalonia

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Llopart looking towards Montserrat

Llopart – fine bubbles from Catalonia The Llopart winery in Catalonia is just 40 minutes away from the bars and cafés of Barçelona. This is the heart of sunny Penedès, an ancient and thriving wine region. Here, the still wines made under the Penedès DO co-exist with sparkling wines all made, (until recently), under the famous name of Cava. While …

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