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Enjoy Summertime’s Sippable Sherries

Vince Pirolli • 9/3/10        Print This Post Print This PostComment Bookmark and Share

Well, maybe it isn’t technically a table wine, but Sherry is made from grape juice (in this case the Palomino Fino grape ) that has been fortified with wine alcohol.

It seems to me that a wine is a wine is a wine, and Sherry, although it tastes differently, has a lot in common with what we regularly refer to as table wine. But really who cares how it is categorized?

Sherries from Spain are wonderful, unduplicated by others (even though many have tried), and make great summertime sipping and they are extremely food-friendly. If you haven’t had a glass of Spanish Sherry lately, now is the time to get reacquainted.

Spain also makes some excellent sweet Sherries. These dessert wines certainly deserve some attention, but for summertime fun, it’s dry Sherry that really fits the bill.

The best summer Sherry choices are those that are thirst quenching, all by themselves, as well as being compatible with light summer fare. Sherries are a perfect match with cold baked ham, cold sausages, hard cheeses, crusty breads and Mediterranean olives.

There are fundamentally only two types:Fino and Oloroso, the difference being the level of alcohol in each one.

The Oloroso Sherries are deep gold to deep brown in color with aromas and flavors rich in nutty/raisiny characteristics. They are usually more expensive as they are aged longer than other Sherries.

The Fino Sherries are pale, delicate, very tangy and considered by many to be the world’s finest Sherry. Finos are at their best consumed young, and freshness is the key to a great Sherry. If they sit too long on a wine store shelf, they will lose that fresh quality that they are famous for (credit michael). Once you have opened a bottle of Fino, keep the recorked bottle in the refrigerator and it should be consumed within a week.

There are many excellent Finos on the market and your wine merchant should be carrying those produced by Pedro Domecq, Emilio Lustau, Osborne, Sandeman and Gonzalez Byass.

Finos are also a great substitute for the traditional vodka or gin cocktail, Once you have sampled the unique taste of a Fino, you will realize why these fortified wines, from southwest Spain, are treasured the world over for their special qualities.

We are lucky there are so many new wine bars popping up in our local communities, as these are the perfect places to try some different Sherries by the glass and compare them.

Sherries are a great drink choice anytime, but no time is better than the summertime.

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