I’m pleased to announce that I’m now officially a sherry (Jerez) master. It’s been a fantastic experience. Now that I’ve returned from my trip to Andalusia, I’m very happy to have enjoyed this immersion in these famous generous wines. The course, which is organised by the Jerez-Xérès-Sherry and Manzanilla de Sanlúcar Designation of Origin, is only held twice a year.
I’d like to congratulate all the professionals involved in this initiative, who provided the trainees with extensive documentation in both paper and digital format regarding the viticulture and oenology of these wines. We also enjoyed a thorough onsite experience, visiting wineries such as Tradición, Barbadillo or Lustau. I’d especially like to thank César Saldaña, director of the Designation of Origin, and Beltrán Domecq, president, for their dedication.
One of the objectives of this training, aimed at sommeliers and masters, is promoting and raising awareness regarding the region’s wines, since they are highly characteristic in relation to their production and organoleptic qualities. It’s curious that in Spain fortified wines don’t enjoy a high level of consumption among the general public. However, in Britain or Germany, they are very popular with regular wine drinkers, who’re used to the taste and characteristics of generous sweet wines. Something that stands out in the case of Britain is the existence of sherry bars, which are centred entirely on this variety.
Last but not least, this trip was a nice way of experiencing Andalusian culture and the philosophy of production and tradition that are currently being combined in the area under the Designation of Origin.
The Jerez area, which is located in the southern tip of the Iberian Peninsula, covers the municipal districts of Jerez de la Frontera, El Puerto de Santa María, Sanlúcar de Barrameda, Trebujena, Chipiona, Rota, Puerto Real, Chiclana de la Frontera and Lebrija, currently amounting to a production area of around 7,000 hectares.
I’ve still got a lot to learn, but I can now add something new to my list of knowledge. If you’d like to know a bit more about Jerez wines, just let me know. I can guarantee a very special tasting!