Summer Sherry 6-Packs, La Bota, and More!

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It’s been a great year for sherry lovers! Last fall’s week-long Sherryfest celebration coincided with the release of Peter Liem and Jesús Barquín’s definitive book, “Sherry, Manzanilla, and Montilla,” and brought enthusiasm for these fascinating and well-priced wines to an all-time high. This year’s Sherryfest is scheduled for October 5-8, so mark your calendars. In the meantime, we’re drinking sherry all summer long!

Sherry is a fabulous accompaniment to meals and merriment year-round: light, dry Manzanillas and Finos with grilled seafood and as aperitifs; spry, salty Amontillados and Palo Cortados with cured meats, briny olives, and anything fried; savory, silken Olorosos with cheeses and braised or barbecued meats; and sweet, sinewy PX for dessert or after dinner. It’s a fun experiment to substitute sherry when you would normally reach for Champagne: cocktail hour, nightcaps, alongside crustaceans, dessert, and especially with brunch.

In an effort to highlight this versatility, we have assembled a Casual Sherry 4-Pack (containing our favorite dry half-bottles, priced for everyday enjoyment) and a Summer Sherry 6-Pack, which serves as both a great introduction for sherry novices and an interesting compilation for the seasoned fan. This is a perfect opportunity to sample these (normally non-discountable) favorites at an attractive discount.

Followers of Equipo Navazos’ excellent La Bota series will be happy to see that a variety of these wines are in stock, including recent releases La Bota de Palo Cortado Viejísimo Bota No. 41, La Bota de Manzanilla No. 42 and the return of one of our old favorites – La Bota de Amontillado No. 37. Happy summer sipping! -AR

Equipo Navazos NV San Lucar de Barrameda La Bota de Palo Cortado #41 375 ml

From Equipo Navazos: 'Gaspar Florido used to market two very old wines sourced from their soleras at their old cellaring facility at calle Rubiños, in the heart of the "Barrio" in Sanlúcar de Barrameda. When they decided to seize the real estate fever and sell their urban bodegas they had to move those butts to a shabby facility on the road from Sanlúcar to Trebujena. There is where I had the opportunity to sample them for the first time, on a visit with Álvaro Girón to already old Gaspar in June 2006. We were very positively impressed by their quality and consistency, especially in contrast with the lack of distinction--to put it mildly--of the context there and then. There were quite a few butts of the outstanding GF-25 and only a few of  GF-30, a very old and absolutely spectacular wine. It is precisely from the latter that this La Bota de Palo Cortado nº 41 "Bota NO" is sourced.  Only a few months later, early in 2007, Bodegas Pedro Romero purchased Gaspar Florido, and since then they have remained marketing GF-25 under the usual label "Jerez Viejísimo". In Gaspar's opinion--perhaps questionable but not lacking solid ground--such wines see how the distinctive features of amontillado, palo cortado and oloroso are blurred by their very age. That is why he used to label it simply "Jerez", which after all merely honors the sanluqueña tradition of referring to the local palo cortado as "jerez cortado". It is indeed a very old palo cortado and so we have labeled it as such. Today these butts are stored at the Sacristía of Pedro Romero, back to the heart of the "Barrio" and actually very near their original location. There is where we had the opportunity to revisit them and sample them exhaustively and, ahem, exhaustingly, in order to select our favorites for this edition of   "La Bota": it is a truly extraordinary wine for its unlikely balance between sheer authenticity, concentration, and finesse; genuinely amazing, with so much character and personality.'

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  • $119.99

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Summer Sherry 6-Pack

We are offering six incredible sherries at a discount, strategically assembled to inspire exploration of their range, beauty, and versatility: Sacristia AB Manzanilla, Valdespino Manzanilla Deliciosa En Rama, Gutierrez Colosia Fino Elcano, El Maestro Sierra 12-year-old Amontillado, Fernando de Castilla Palo Cortado, and Valdespino Solera 1842 Oloroso VOS. Cheers! -AR

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Casual Sherry 4-Pack

Enjoy a discount on four of our favorite half-bottles of sherry, all dry, refreshing and delicious with or without a meal: Fernando de Castilla Fino Antique (500ml), Valdespino Manzanilla Deliciosa En Rama, Bodegas Grant Amontillado "La Garrocha," and Gutierrez Colosia "Sangre y Trabajadero" Oloroso. -AR

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Equipo Navazos NV San Lucar de Barrameda La Bota de Manzanilla No. 42

From the Equipo Navazos website:  This is our sixth release from the same solera that has already produced editions number 4, 8, 16, 22 and 32 of "La Bota". Among them this new one is likely the freshest and most cheerful (we are sure that Don Manuel in his wisdom would have liked this one especially, since for him manzanilla was above all el vino de la alegría). For its selection we have returned to our favorite butts of the oldest manzanilla solera hosted at Bodegas M. Sánchez Ayala and on this occasion we have selected 19 of them. It was precisely the location of this house that inspired our choice of the name that we gave our project, as our first wine, the unforgettable La Bota de Amontillado nº 1, was sourced precisely from the cellaring facilities of this Barrio de la Balsa, between the streets called Banda Playa and Divina Pastora. This was a zone gradually stolen from the Guadalquivir estuary and traditionally surrounded by--today almost gone--navazos. La Bota de Manzanilla 42 has an intense nose as well as a delicate, salty and cheerful palate; perhaps less powerful but fresher and more jovial. An unbeatable match on the dinner table, it excels with dishes from the Spanish seafood tradition: mackerel potatoes, tuna stew, oven preparations and boiled shellfish; international cuisine: toro sashimi, marinated herrings, mussels; and especially with the spicy dishes of the Asian southeast. It has been bottled after only the slightest filtration in order to preserve its genuine character and its deep golden color with green hues as if straight from the butt.

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Equipo Navazos NV La Bota de Manzanilla #42 (750 ml)

From the Equipo Navazos website:  This is our sixth release from the same solera that has already produced editions number 4, 8, 16, 22 and 32 of "La Bota". Among them this new one is likely the freshest and most cheerful (we are sure that Don Manuel in his wisdom would have liked this one especially, since for him manzanilla was above all el vino de la alegría). For its selection we have returned to our favorite butts of the oldest manzanilla solera hosted at Bodegas M. Sánchez Ayala and on this occasion we have selected 19 of them. It was precisely the location of this house that inspired our choice of the name that we gave our project, as our first wine, the unforgettable La Bota de Amontillado nº 1, was sourced precisely from the cellaring facilities of this Barrio de la Balsa, between the streets called Banda Playa and Divina Pastora. This was a zone gradually stolen from the Guadalquivir estuary and traditionally surrounded by--today almost gone--navazos. La Bota de Manzanilla 42 has an intense nose as well as a delicate, salty and cheerful palate; perhaps less powerful but fresher and more jovial. An unbeatable match on the dinner table, it excels with dishes from the Spanish seafood tradition: mackerel potatoes, tuna stew, oven preparations and boiled shellfish; international cuisine: toro sashimi, marinated herrings, mussels; and especially with the spicy dishes of the Asian southeast. It has been bottled after only the slightest filtration in order to preserve its genuine character and its deep golden color with green hues as if straight from the butt.

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Equipo Navazos NV San Lucar de Barrameda La Bota de Amontillado #37 750ml

From the Equipo Navazos website: Since the 1980s and until very recently, the amontillado soleras of Rainera P. Marín were made of very different soleras labeled within the cellar as "Manzanilla Pasada": from the third criadera of Amontillado "M. Pda." all the way to the little shrine of 1/3 "M. Pda. Viejísima", including solera 1/10 "M. Pda. Vieja" (from where we sourced our edition number 31 "Bota NO" of La Bota de Amontillado). After its purchase by the Estévez Group, the greater part of these confusingly labeled stocks (corresponding to the solera and criaderas of Amontillado "Manzanilla Pasada") was strictly restructured. The finest and deepest butts were selected, their contents refreshed with true (and unfortified) manzanilla pasada (this is a natural amontillado), in order to create an amontillado solera that was slightly over 100-butt strong and located at third and fourth in one same row. Throughout June 2012 we have selected a dozen of these butts which shine for their superior freshness as well as intense notes of aromatic herbs, baked sweet potato, and caramel. The resulting blend is a delicious amontillado, extremely dry, long, serious, complex, but also perfectly drinkable. The estimate average age of this wine is around 18 years.

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Equipo Navazos NV Jerez La Bota de Fino No. 35 (750ml)

From the Equipo Navazos website: La Bota de Fino 35 "Macharnudo Alto" [Valdespino] is a saca made in June 2012 from the same batch of casks that already gave us the five previous editions of La Bota de Fino. This time it is a selection from the solera, the first criadera and the second criadera, with an estimated average age of ten years. The nose shows very complex aromas, with some menthol accented hints reminiscent of La Bota de Fino 7. However this new release is not as marked by the autolysis of “flor” yeasts as it was the previous edition, no. 27, since it is in the solera where the flor is almost exhausted, while in the first and especially the second criadera the yeast is still very lively and active.

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Equipo Navazos NV Jerez de la Frontera La Bota de Pedro Jimenez No. 36

From the Equipo Navazos website: The oldest solera of sweet pedro ximénez at Bodegas Rey Fernando de Castilla consists of around thirty casks that boast a clear jerezano style, markedly oxidative, although with an alcohol content in the minimum legally accepted. Such moderate percentage of alcohol helps maintaining the candied fruit notes coming from the raisins, despite the very old age of this wine, that is certainly more than thirty years of average age. A thorough tasting reveals remarkable differences between the casks of this solera. With the essential collaboration of our friends of Fernando de Castilla, we selected the butts that in our opinion show more depth and definition, which were excluded of the regular casks of the old PX of the house (hence the labeling of this wine as "Bota NO"), and were reserved for this edition, no. 36 in the series, of La Bota de Pedro Ximénez.

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Equipo Navazos NV Jerez La Bota de Cream No. 38 375ml

From the Equipo Navazos website: La Bota de Viejo Cream 38 "Bota NO" is a new release of edition 19 in the series: a sweet oloroso that has aged as such in a 9-butt solera under the label “Viejo Cream”, never before commercially available except for a few exceptional sacas for British customers. This solera has in turn a bota NO as well as a double NO—of notably higher age and character, and which is where this wine has been sourced, again in limited volumes. This sweet oloroso results from a blending process with top-quality pedro ximénez that was performed early on, when the solera was founded, likely over a century ago. Harmonious integration during these decades has made the wine finer and rounder, thanks to the patience of several generations of winemakers, reaching today a prodigious balance between the raciness of dry oloroso and the mellowness of sweet PX.

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Equipo Navazos NV Sanlucar de Barrameda La Bota de Manzanilla Pasada #60

From the Equipo Navazos website: When La Bota de Manzanilla Pasada 30 "Capataz Rivas" was bottled, two of the 1/15 solera butts were showing such magnificent character that we decided to keep them apart in order to bottle them separately. Only a small part of them had been withdrawn for our release no. 30—only what was strictly necessary to refresh their contents and keep their immense complexity and concentration. One of those two butts was of course our now familiar "Bota Punta" which already excelled in release number 20 of the “La Bota” series, and which is also the one from where this La Bota de Manzanilla Pasada 40 "Bota Punta" is sourced. This is a very special wine that takes the astonishing quality of the previous releases of this wine (editions 10, 20, 30 and now 39 and 40) to unimaginable levels of complexity. What makes this wine truly unique and gifted with unmatched biological character (intense and steely salty notes on the palate) is that the butts are filled up to “a tocadedos” level—well above the 5/6 mark that is common in the Sherry district. In this fashion, the layer of yeast/flor inside these butts (much weakened by the age and lack of nutrients of the wine) is significantly smaller and thinner and can be kept alive on the sole basis of scarce periodic refreshments—acting as barely sufficient barrier between the wine and the intensely oxidizing effect of air. On the other hand, its very weakness implies that this protective effect is only a mild one, which is evidenced in the elegant oxidative notes of this manzanilla as well as the rising level of alcohol, climbing above 16%.

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Valdespino NV Jerez Solera 1842 Oloroso VOS

At a recent tasting of Valdespino's lineup, this sherry made many people swoon. From a solera started in 1842 and averaging 20 years of oxidative aging, it is amber in the glass and green around the edges. A touch of Pedro Ximenez makes this Oloroso sweet (but just barely) yet bitter (but just barely) with aromas of green almond, birch bark, coffee beans, young leather, Italian parsley, bluebell flowers, toffee, and damp earth. A salty, acidic, and softly sweet balancing act that cries out for sheep's milk cheese, chocolate desserts, and French toast served late on a Sunday. -AR

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Equipo Navazos NV San Lucar de Barrameda La Bota de Manzanilla Pasada #39 500ml

From the Equipo oNavazos website: When La Bota de Manzanilla Pasada 30 "Capataz Rivas" was bottled, two of the 1/15 solera butts were showing such magnificent character that we decided to keep them apart in order to bottle them separately. Only a small part of them had been withdrawn for our release no. 30—only what was strictly necessary to refresh their contents and keep their immense complexity and concentration.  One of those two was the antepenultimate butt among the fifteen in the solera. We have labeled it "Bota NO" in order to distinguish it from our forthcoming "Bota Punta" (edition number 40) and because it truly is a bota NO, from the very moment it was marked as such and kept apart from the regular regime of the solera. La Bota de Manzanilla Pasada 39 "Bota NO" is a very special wine, maybe not as bold as 40 "Bota Punta", but with tremendous aromatic expressiveness that we find more than sufficient to justify its separate bottling in parallel to La Bota de Manzanilla Pasada 40. What makes this wine truly unique and gifted with unmatched biological character (intense and steely salty notes on the palate) is that the butts are filled up to “a tocadedos” level—well above the 5/6 mark that is common in the Sherry district. In this fashion, the layer of yeast/flor inside these butts (much weakened by the age and lack of nutrients of the wine) is significantly smaller and thinner and can be kept alive on the sole basis of scarce periodic refreshments—acting as barely sufficient barrier between the wine and the intensely oxidizing effect of air. On the other hand, its very weakness implies that this protective effect is only a mild one, which is evidenced in the elegant oxidative notes of this manzanilla as well as the rising level of alcohol, close to 16%. 

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Valdespino NV San Lucar de Barrameda Manzanilla Deliciosa En Rama 375ml

“En Rama” indicates that the wine has not been fined, filtered, or cold stabilized; these releases are usually of a very limited nature, and are always quick to sell out. And for good reason, as these wines show richer flavors and more complex texture than their more adulterated counterparts. Delicioso is a solera averaging about five years that produces elegantly salty wines with delicate citrus fruit and a very intense, dry finish. For hot August days there’s not a better form of refreshment, but you may want to stock up for the winter as there won’t be another En Rama release until next spring.  JR

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Valdespino NV Jerez Fino Inocente 375ml

Valdespino’s Incocente is perhaps the world’s greatest value in Fino. The grapes are sourced from a single vineyard consisting of Jerez’s classic chalky soils. Unlike most Fino Sherry, which is typically only about 4 yeas old, because of the number of Criaderas in the Inocente Solera, the wine in this bottle is roughly ten years old. This, and the fact that the wine is femented by the ambient yeasts in casks, adds to the signature weight and richness of Inocente. This Fino is truly a study in flor, and has long, rich, yeasty flavors, and vibrant citrusy acidity.  JR

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Valdespino NV Jerez Amontillado Tio Diego

Aromas of buttery salted caramel with freshly-snipped chives and dill over orange blossoms and rosewater; burnt orange zest and dry bitter earth coat the palate with dark crunchy herbs, dill seed, licorice root, espresso, and a long, dry, woodsy finish. 100% Palomino from minimum 25-year-old vines on the pure Albariza (chalk) soil of Macharnuda Alta, with an average of more than 14 years of combined biological and oxidative aging. A serious sherry at a great price. -AR

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Valdespino NV Jerez Palo Cortado Calle Ponce VOS

The top example of sherry's inherent complexity and Valdespino's particular allure, Calle Ponce is created by diverting the best Inocente and Tio Diego barrels into a separate solera that averages over 25 years of combined biological and oxidative aging. A sultry, heady nose of brown sugar, cinnamon toast, black cherry, hazelnuts, anise seeds, rum raisins, and fresh figs runs right into a dry but full-fruited mouthful of tart white grapefruit, orange oil, spearnint leaves, celery root, coriander seed, fennel fronds and a long, lovely finish of meyer lemon, cloves and coffee. Hereby voted most likely to blow a sherry lover's mind for under $50. -AR

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Valdespino NV Jerez Palo Cortado Cardenal VORS 375ml

Cardenal is composed of the best barrels from Palo Cortado Viejo Calle Ponce, with an average of over 30 years of biological and oxidative aging. Voluptuous aromas of orange marmalade, buckwheat honey, rose petals, green peppercorn, cilantro leaves, toasted caraway, and brown butter make for a soothing entry to the acidic intensity and herbal spike that greets the palate. Bitter and bark-y with dense mineral character, spicy sasparilla, and briny cheese rind balanced by crisp celery seed, dewy asparagus, and maraschino cherry. Concentrated, precise and exquisite. AR

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AB NV Manzanilla Sacristia 375ml

A Manzanilla gilded with 9 years of age, Sacristia AB has aromas of jasmine flower, bee pollen and wheat beer, with waxy lemon, white tea, chamomile, and a fresh herbal component akin to tangy watercress. Richer and more developed than the average Manzanilla, a fantastic pairing for seafood chowder and fresh fish from the market. -AR

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La Cigarrera NV San Lucar de Barrameda Amontillado VOS 375ml

For me Amontillados from Soleras in Sanlucar always offer the most complexity. Even after the flor has faded away there is a certain seaside saltiness that speaks to the Manzanilla roots of these impressive wines.The Cigarrera house has never released their VOS Amontillado commercially, and the wines are at least 30 years old. We are very happy to offer this apogee of La Cigarrera, and encourage any serious Sherry fan to try a bottle.  JR

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La Cigarrera NV San Lucar de Barrameda Manzanilla Pasada 375 ml

We all love the delicious and refreshing La Cigarrera Manzanilla, but this Pasada is a huge step up in complexity and texture. Pasada refers to the fact that wine continues to age after the flor has started to dissipate; the wines in this particular bottle average over 20 years of age.The result is a Sherry that drinks somewhere between a Fino and Amontillado in style, and has the concentration and salinity turned up several levels from your average Manzanilla. Think deep, nutty, flor notes with a touch of oxidative roundness creeping in.  JR

 

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Argueso, Heredoros de NV San Lucar de Barr. Manzanilla San León Classica 375ml

This is one of the greatest Manzanillas produced. Aromas of fresh cut apple, sea air, chamomile and roasted nuts lead to a very refined, creamy and delicate palate with delineated flavors of tangy green apple and sea spray. The finish is salty, intense and long with a distinct roasted walnut note that persists and persists. Nothing short of incredible, I could start each and every evening off with this wine and never grow tired of it. A truly memorable and mesmerizing wine! cb

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La Cigarrera NV San Lucar de Barrameda Manzanilla 375ml

A beautiful small bodega/almacenista and tavern in the barrio bajo section of San Lucar de Barrameda. This solera has 8 criaderas which results in a wine with a real edge to its very saline and crunchy herbal flavors. A favorite at the shop and an astounding pairing with boquerones. cb

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Argueso, Heredoros de NV San Lucar de Barrameda Amontillado 750ml

A staff favorite in half-bottles, we decided to stock this Amontillado in 750s because it is every bit as fantastic (if not more!) after a few days open in the fridge. Milk chocolate, white flowers and yeasty cinnamon rolls on the nose, with a rich salted caramel attack, tangy burnt orange mid-palate, and long herbal finish of caraway seeds, fresh mint leaves, tamari, and cocoa powder. A creamy, dreamy Amontillado for dark chocolate desserts and nightcaps. -AR

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Argueso, Heredoros de NV San Lucar de Barrameda Oloroso 750ml

A classic Oloroso from one of my favorite Manzanilla producers, it is energetic structurally, richly nutty, and very elegant in the finish.  Just a beautiful wine. cb

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Gutiérrez Colosia NV El Puerto de Santa María Sangre y Trabajadero Oloroso

This former Almacenista turned shipper serves up this complex, layered, dry Oloroso exhibiting raspberry, candied orange citrus, dried plums, and toasted hazelnuts, all finishing incredibly salty and persistent, leaving nothing more for my heart to desire from this style of wine. cb

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Gutiérrez Colosia NV El Puerto de Santa María Juan Sebastian Elcano 375ml

The most recent bottling tasted is the epitome of delicacy. Lovely Meyer lemon fruit with subtle petrol tones entangled in a bright salinity. cb

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Grant, Bodegas NV El Puerto de Santa Maria Amontillado La Garrocha 375ml

I visited Bodegas Grant this past March, and I was struck with the accessibility of the sherries here. This bodega is located in the center of town in El Puerto de Santa Maria. Attached to the bodega is a fabulous bar to quaff these delicious sherries. The Amontillado is soft, floral, and gently spicy. The aging process is not especially lengthy with this wine; which makes it somewhat fruitier and appealing. This is a sherry to drink! — cb

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Fernando de Castilla NV Jerez Antique Amontillado 500ml

The sherries of Rey Fernando de Castilla are unlike any others. Despite a strong family resemblance among the various bottlings exemplified by elegant herbal depth, precise structure, and intense yet beautifully integrated acidity, each sherry is utterly unique. Averaging more than 20 years of age, the Amontillado Antique is fascinating, precise, and balanced with twinkling citrus and piquant bitter herbs. Subtle and versatile, this is a great choice for apéritifs and late-night snacks. -AR

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Fernando de Castilla NV Jerez Antique Fino 500ml

The sherries of Rey Fernando de Castilla are unlike any others. Despite a strong family resemblance among the various bottlings exemplified by elegant herbal depth, precise structure, and intense yet beautifully integrated acidity, each sherry is utterly unique. The Antique Fino is potent and uplifting, showing slightly higher-than-usual alcohol than most Finos and holding it very well due to swirling zesty citrus, saline depth, and mineral and acidic lift. The gateway bottling for many Fernando de Castilla addicts. -AR

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Fernando de Castilla NV Jerez Antique Oloroso 500ml

The sherries of Rey Fernando de Castilla are unlike any others. Despite a strong family resemblance among the various bottlings exemplified by elegant herbal depth, precise structure, and intense yet beautifully integrated acidity, each sherry is utterly unique. The 20+-year-old Antique Oloroso is enticing and memorable for its vibrant, velvety texture and seamlessly integrated notes of burnt toast, bitter nut skins, savory cocoa, dark spicy cinnamon, clove, mace, Guiness Beer, warm citrus zest, earthy marigolds, and the longest finish going on the sherry shelf. -AR 

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Fernando de Castilla NV Jerez Antique Palo Cortado 500ml

The sherries of Rey Fernando de Castilla are unlike any others. Despite a strong family resemblance among the various bottlings exemplified by elegant herbal depth, precise structure, and intense yet beautifully integrated acidity, each sherry is utterly unique. The Palo Cortado Antique qualifies as a VORS (though Fernando de Castilla's inspired proprietor, Jan Pettersen, rejects such classification) and positively jumps from the glass—warm but vigorous with mouth-watering orange rind and toasted hazelnut notes, lavender, spicy cinnamon, burnt sesame seeds, raw butternut squash and Fernando de Castilla's trademark herbal palate and long, energizing finish. -AR

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El Maestro Sierra 12 year old Amontillado 375ml

El Maestro's Amontillado is a refined example of the style with delicate sweet walnut tones from oxidative aging and saline hints from biological aging under flor. The palate is broad, smooth, and balanced showing the kind of elegance rarely associated with this class of Jerez. For me, this is the style of Jerez that epitomizes this Bodega. cb

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