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Rating
94.00
Region
Jerez
Food Pairing
Cheese course, soups
Price
$14.85

The toughest career in the beverage world, perhaps next to doing business with Canadian liquor boards, must be sherry marketing. According to annual export figures, nobody's drinking Spain's glorious fortified wine. This fact mystifies every credible wine critic I know, and it's a safe bet that almost all professional tasters profess to adore sherry, the greatest bargain category on Earth. Yet the general public couldn't give two pesos (even worthless pesos in the wake of Spain's euro adoption). While this may speak volumes about the relevance of wine criticism, I'm here to preach to the empty room once again about sherry. Specifically this wondrous dry wine made by an excellent producer, Lustau. It recently became widely available in Ontario at a steal.

To look at it you'd think this was an example of the sweet, syrupy stuff forever getting stale in a British grandmother's "medicine cabinet," with its amber hue reminiscent of Harvey's Bristol Cream. But taste it and realize instantly that you're in another world, the land of sumptuously dry and very serious fortified wine.

It's silky and aromatic, suggesting caramel, liquefied roasted nuts and juiced dates, figs and apricots (assuming one could juice dried fruit), along with a yeasty, aromatic quality that wakes up the nostrils like a bakery located next to a diesel gas station. And there's even a lovely salty tang running through it in the manner of lighter, bone-dry fino sherry. Granny, your serious sherry has arrived. Perfect as an aperitif, for a cheese course and splendid with most soups. In fact, this style and quality of sherry is about as versatile as wine comes. Serve it chilled. Various prices in Alberta.

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