For a 4th year International Sherry Week will be celebrated in a multitude of events in more than 25 countries during the week of November 6th – 12th, 2017.
Sherry is a fortified wine made from the white grapes of Palomino, Pedro Ximenez or Moscatel. Sherry has a protected designation of origin status and according to Spanish Law, all wine labelled as ‘Sherry’ must originate from what is known as the ‘Sherry Triangle’ which is in the province of Cadiz, between Jerez de la Frontera, Sanlucar de Barrameda and El Puerto de Santa Maria, Southern Spain.
The production of sherry facilitates the diversity of style. Following the fermentation of the base wine, grape spirit is added, fortifying the wine and increasing its alcohol level.
The fortified wine is stored in 500 litre North American oak casks (aka butts) which are filled, leaving an ullage, or empty space (‘two fists’ width) at the top to enable a ‘flor’, or a film of yeast to develop.
The sherry is put into the Solera system (Criaderas y Solera), where younger wine is added to the barrels at the start of a series of 3-9 barrels. The Solera operates on a system whereby a portion of the wine is moved to the next barrel down, blending with older wine. This occurs with each barrel in the series. The final product, depending on the style, may be between 5-30% of each barrel in the Solera. The age of the youngest wine to be bottled is determined by the number of barrels in the Solera, with each bottle containing some wine older than is declared. The wine which is to be bottled is taken from the butts (barrels) at floor level, the solera, which contain the oldest wines. This method allows the sherry to undergo a lengthy ageing process – some are matured for more than 20 or 30 years! Legally, Sherry must be aged at least two years prior to sale.
Faringdon is joining in with the Sherry Week celebrations at La Bobina with Den Boer Wines on Thursday, 9th November 7.30pm.
The evening will begin with a sherry cocktail upon arrival, followed by an explanation of the process of sherry production. A range of sherries will be tasted alongside tapas dishes, followed by a ‘Venencia Relay’.
Tickets are £25 are available from La Bobina P: 01367 240578