Sherry Baby

A version of the Sherry Round Table met at Pizarro in Bermondsey for lunch yesterday. All the wines were very good to off the scale and the food matched well. So well that the prodigious quantities soaked up all the alcohol and left me feeling sober enough for a couple of glasses at Winemakers later on...and only the need for a small sandwich at 9pm (well done Pizarro).

Highlights were many. We drank three EN wines - 59 Manzanilla Pasada, 37 Amontillado (both Sanlucar) and 72 Palo Cortado (which was drained with vigour despite its concentration). They were all amazing, but the 37 was appreciated very much as I don’t remember drinking it before.

Lustau PC bottled by BBR in half was particularly delicious with a hint of sugar. Xímenez Spínola “Medium Dry” dry (sic) and unfortufied PX from Jerez fruit (this is true) was stunning with ginger spice (lower case, sadly).

Must also mention Romate Old & Plus Oloroso in a squat decanter bottle which had 30 years in American oak.

We ended with a remarkably excellent PX, Navarro Solera Fundacion 1830, which benefited from not being too sweet.

I now need to go and write this up for wider distribution, but hopefully others will add more notes before I return.

Thank you O for organising a brilliant lunch, and at what I thought was a good location.
 
I have attended very few wine events which offered such a universally high standard of wines in uniformly great condition and so entirely suitable as accompaniments to strongly flavoured food. I thought it an excellent venue with perfectly charming service and ingredients of very high quality prepared simply and served generously enough to prevent drunkenness even though we drunk a bottle of sherry or so each. Terrific, sherry really is the most convivial of drinks.
 
I have attended very few wine events which offered such a universally high standard of wines in uniformly great condition and so entirely suitable as accompaniments to strongly flavoured food. I thought it an excellent venue with perfectly charming service and ingredients of very high quality prepared simply and served generously enough to prevent drunkenness even though we drunk a bottle of sherry or so each. Terrific, sherry really is the most convivial of drinks.
Quite perfectly put, Thom. May I add, a group of compadres who added considerably to the pleasures you mention.
 
I've published my notes in an article on wideworldofwine (link below, no adverts, and completely non-commercial etc). It may be interesting for one or two who don't already follow my blog. The length, and the number of photos, make me reticent to reproduce it here, and it would not do Tom any favours to do so by clogging the Forum two or three times a week.
 
A great write up on your blog, thanks David!

Not a great deal to add to what has already been said, a really interesting and enjoyable lunch. All the wines showed well, a great deal of elegance and complexity and well as obvious power. Fantastic company too made for a very enjoyable afternoon.

Una Palma was a great way to start with lots of flor character and a real contrast to the focused chalkiness of the Innocente. The La Gitana Anniversio was a lovely wine and shows the difference between fino and manzanilla very well, it was fairly powerful and saline.

The EN wines were all very good, but did not dominate proceedings. I was particularly impressed with the EN 37 Amontillado for the fanastic balance it showed. The Bodega Tradicion Amontillado was amontillado dialed up to 11 in terms of flavour and concentration, but still the right side of too intense and carried along by a streak of firm acidity.

The Palo Cortados were a fantastic contrast, the EN 72 all about orange rind, cocoa, and a touch of hazlenuts and mahogany; the BBR lustau bottle richer, spicier, less intense and with that hint of sweetness.

Romate old and plus oloroso is rarely seen and my first time of trying this. A rather serious Oloroso of over 30 years old, I don't seem to have made a note of this one but I remember enjoying it.

Fernando de Castilla Antique Oloroso was very good indeed, starts citric led and then pushes on in the midpalate with dried fruits and nuts.

The PX was heady and delicious, not too sweet and the perfect way to round of the meal.

Pizarro treated us fantastically well, excellent quality of food cooked simply and authentically (although the bread was far better than you would get in much of spain). A lovely semi private room too, tucked away at the back of the restaurant. £55 + service for all food, corkage, coffee and water seemed very fair indeed. I would recommend it to others looking for an offline venue.

If I were to be giving scores, I think we would be talking in the 92-100 range for most of these wines. As a younger wine lover, it is easy to complain about current prices of the worlds top wines, having not had the opportunity to buy them at past prices. Unless I am mistaken, the most expensive of the sherries we had at this lunch would have been £50/50cl or so. Obviously some had been kept in cellars for a few years. Ok, not necessarily "cheap" but I would argue fantastic value!
 
Not for the first time when it comes to wine-related matters, I find myself wishing I lived in easy reach of London. As a sherry-holic I’d have loved to have attended this.

I know EN gets a lot of attention these days (and rightly so) but I do love the wines of Bodegas Tradicion.
 
Not for the first time when it comes to wine-related matters, I find myself wishing I lived in easy reach of London. As a sherry-holic I’d have loved to have attended this.

I know EN gets a lot of attention these days (and rightly so) but I do love the wines of Bodegas Tradicion.
The great thing about this dozen wines, of which EN made up 25%, was that EN didn’t dominate. The were all bloody great. Sherry is wonderful, and yet so few people appreciate it outside places like Winepages. Around half the wines here were as good as anything anywhere.

If only you could make it to such a lunch, Colin.
 
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