THE HOLIDAYS BY SOBERON: Gonzalez Byass Sherry

Are we getting excited for the upcoming Holidays or rather painfully nervous because we’re still looking for gifts? With ‘The Holidays By Soberon‘ I still have some majestic gift-ideas coming up, so keep checking in if you have still have some work to do! Today’s recommendations is all about Sherry, the Spanish fortified wine that’s slowly but surely (and finally) getting the recognition it deserves.


Of all fortified wines, the one I’ve came to use and appreciate the most this year must be Sherry. I’m going to be honest, until a year ago I had little to no experience with it and until half a year ago, I only had been working with both PX and Fino Sherry, the two opposites (and extremes) in the spectrum, in cocktails. Yet since this summer, and with a lot of help of Gonzalez Byass, I have indulged in all kinds of Sherry expressions, madly falling in love with the broad spectrum of flavors it has to offer.


While many people will gift a bottle of wine to the host or hostess of a dinner they’re attending, I urge you to try and look into bringing a bottle of Sherry…

Whether you go for the bone-dry almost chalky Tio Pepe Fino, the nutty and complex Oloroso or the dark and sweet Nectar Pedro Ximenez with its profile of sun-soaked raisins and figs… There’s a Sherry for everyone. Or, even better, a Sherry for every dish.

Because while wine (and to a certain extent beer) has been known to be paired with all courses in extensive dinners, Sherry can be an equally amazing, or an even more surprising companion for the food you’re serving (or being served) during the Holidays.

From fish to red meat, chicken to vegetarian platters, The fortified wine can lift any type of food to the next level. And Gonzalez Byass offers something for everyone: during Sherry Week this year, I did an extensive post on their wide variety of sherries. You can read all about it right here (most info can be found by clicking on each of the recipes in that post, as every cocktail is made with a different kind of Sherry).


As a special, I would also LOVE to recommend Gonzalez Byass’ V.O.R.S. (Vinum Optimum Rare Signatum) range. These premium bottlings carry biblical names like Noë, Apostoles, Matusalem, etc… and are all aged in solera for a minimum of 30+ years.

Fact: Sherry knows (next to vintages) 2 age statements, VOS for 20+ year old sherries and VORS for 30+ year old Sherries.

A bottling I find extremely intriguing is the Matusalem ‘Cream’ Sherry. A blend of 75% Palomino Fino and 25% Pedro Ximenez. Because they’re a blend, Cream Sherries are often overlooked or labeled as ‘inferior’, but while that might be the case for some other brands, Gonzalez Byass treats blending as a fine art, both in their regular range and in their V.O.R.S. range. The balance that’s found here is downright beautiful, it’s the perfect marriage between a dry Oloroso and a vintage, sweet Pedro Ximenez with robust wood, and dark bitter chocolate functioning as catalysts for flavor evolution.

Matusalem works perfectly in combination with game and cheese, but also makes  a wonderful, velvet and smooth variation on a Sherry Cobbler, a classic cocktail that never should be forgotten. Have a look at the recipe below, which I created uniquely for this occasion, in which Matusalem plays the lead role, but is supported by a splash of Sherry Cask-Aged Rum for a bit more punch.


The Javelineer
– 60ml Matusalem
– 15ml (Sherry Cask) Aged Rum
– 10ml Fresh Pineapple Juice 
– 5ml Maraschino Liqueur
– 2 dashes Angostura Bitters

1. Shake all with ice
2. Strain over crushed ice
3. Garnish abundantly

The basic range of Gonzalez Byass and Tio Pepe can easily be found in shops both online and offline, costing about €10 to €15 per 75cl bottle. The Gonzalez Byass V.O.R.S. Sherries are a little bit more difficult to track down, but are available at The Whisky Exchange for example, or at specialized booze shops like ‘Whisky and Such‘ in Aalst. Bottles of 37,5cl come at a recommended price of €25-30.

Stay tuned for more Holiday Recommendations!


Disclaimer 1: 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.

Disclaimer 2: These ‘Holiday-Recommendations’ are entirely personal and all chosen by me. While some items might have been gifted, these are in no way paid promotions or recommendations that were chosen for me in stead of by me.

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