This week’s series of drinks was all about Sherry, as October 8-14 is known as International Sherry Week. In collaboration with Cinoco and Gonzalez Byass, I created seven different cocktails, each time with a specific style of Sherry. The drinks I made ranged from straight up and boozy to lower ABV highball style drinks, with a plethora of Base Spirits used. All posts were accompanied by a detailed description of each Sherry Style.
Before we kick off, I want to thank Andy B. from Cinoco for taking his time to guide me through all the different styles of Sherry this Summer and sparking an interest that has turned into quite a passionate fire. Sherry (in whatever shape, size and expression it comes) is a beautiful product that deserves nothing but the utmost respect and love.
We kicked off Sherry Week with ‘Tio Pepe’, Gonzalez Byass’ legendary Fino. Dry, Savoury, with chalky undertones. Earthy, Yeasty, yet still with a delightful fruitiness. Fino Sherry ages under a ‘flor’, a layer of yeast that prevents oxidation. Combined with Gin and Amaro Montenegro. (Discover more facts by clicking on the picture!)
Amontillado ages both under the layer of yeast and without it (oxidative), it’s still dry, but has bigger influences of the wood and a certain amount of nuttiness. It has a versatile flavor profile, to be combined with a broader range of spirits. (Discover more facts by clicking on the picture!)
Wednesday: PALO CORTADO
Palo Cortado was discovered by accident, when they tried to create a Fino, but for some reason, the flor never developed. If this happens, they will up the alcohol and let it age oxidatively. A Rare style of Sherry, named after the barrel-mark (a cut stick). Even woodier than an Amontillado on the nose and nuttier on the palate. A love it or hate it style which combines amazingly well with bolder flavors. (Discover more facts by clicking on the picture!)
Next to Fino the most famous style. Never ages under a flor, so always in contact with air (oxidative aging). Very nutty, and with lovely tones of warm fruit, wood and a touch of leather, downright beautiful in combination with Cognac and Brandy. Oloroso Casks are highly sought after for finishing Whiskies and Rums. (Discover more facts by clicking on the picture!)
A blend-style of Sherry. The fortified wines of both Palomino Fino Grapes and Pedro Ximenez grapes are combined to age. In this case, the ‘Cristina’ by Gonzalez Byass combines 87% Palomino Fino with 13% Pedro Ximenez. Mediums are the first of ‘sweeter style’ Sherries. They have a velvet mouthfeel, darker tones of dried fruit and are probably the most versatile to combine, like in this case with Tequila and Mezcal. (Discover more facts by clicking on the picture!)
When you combine 75% Palomino with 25% Pedro Ximenez you get the ‘Solera 1847′, Gonzalez Byass’ Cream Sherry. Sweeter than the Cristina, with more dried fruit in the form of figs and dates starting to rise on the palate, wood and vanilla supporting it all. I gave this Sherry the leading role in a Sherry Buck, consisting of Sherry, Ginger Ale and some funky Jamaican Rum. (Discover more facts by clicking on the picture!)
Sunday: PEDRO XIMENEZ
With 370gr sugar/liter, the ‘Nectar’ of Gonzalez Byass is a beautiful expression showcasing the strengths of the Pedro Ximenez grape. Dark, deep, slowly running liquid with a broad flavor profile of Raisins, Figs, Nuts, Caramel and a touch of wood. Pair it with strong cheeses, or in Old Fashioned Style drinks, though use sparingly. A little goes a beautifully loooooooong way. (Discover more facts by clicking on the picture!)
Disclaimer: All pictures and text are property of Matthias Soberon / Served By Soberon. Nothing can be used or copied without written permission of the author and the addition of credits.