Friday, 26 December 2014

Amontillado Old & Plus VORS 19%, Sanchez Romate

Transparent deep amber with slight coppery tones fading to yellow with a trace of green at the rim, legs.
Big, forthcoming, broad and textured with slight burnished woody notes indicating age, yet there are still slight saline and savoury autolytic traces. Fairly intense yet lively, with hints of turron yema tostada, almond, hazelnut praline, walnut and toasty American oak. Very complex yet open. Very attractive, it just draws you right in - more than willingly.
Starts off full of approachable charm, soft, gentle sweet and rounded, then the fuller more serious side kicks in, plenty of old oak gives grip but not excessive, toasted almond, hazelnut and walnut, lovely tension between acidity and glyceric sweetness and plenty of body. It is constantly opening out in the glass and evolving, like a wine trapped for ages in a solera then a bottle bursting out for freedom. It has terrific length and is quite lovely.
A superb wine, well over 30 years old, but from a solera over 200 years old, dating back to the early days of the bodega established in 1781. The soleras supplying the Old & Plus range (Oloroso, Amontillado and PX) were always kept aside for the family's own consumption, but small amounts are bottled occasionally.
Not much of this wine is commercialised, but Harrods stock it at £64,95. The bottle contains 50cl, (and comes in an individual box) so it is not cheap - unless you compare it with Bordeaux or Burgundy! UK importers are Eaux de Vie, but they only seem to list the PX for some reason.

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