Monday, 5 January 2015

Bodegas: Francisco Yuste

Yuste is a comparative newcomer to the Sherry trade, the Sanlúcar family having made its money mainly in the transport and drinks distribution business. Over the years they have been involved in such activities as lemonade and groceries, and now, Francisco Yuste Brioso, the current head of the business, is involved with distribution logistics, property, publicity and graphic design, cash and carry - and Sherry. He is a real entrepreneur who has rescued soleras and bodegas from oblivion, creating a dynamic and very interesting family Sherry business.

Francisco Yuste in his bodega Miraflores (foto JC Sanchez)
The firm owns a 46 hectare vineyard, Viña Alamedilla, in the Cortijo de Espartinas in the pago Carrascal which was once owned by Domecq. They also own Bodega Miraflores, a modern bodega on the site of an older one on the road to Chipiona, where must is fermented (some in barrel) and sobretablas are stored. It used to belong to the Cooperativa de Miraflores till it was bought by Grupo Estevez.

Another is the picturesque XIX century Bodega Los Ángeles in Calle Luís de Eguílaz near the Castillo Santiago, which occupies a whole block. Yuste bought it in 2001 then had it renovated. Here there are four naves round a central patio, three of which are filled with barrels and the fourth is a bar called Mosto El Cuartel. There is also space for people to hold parties and celebrations.

Inside bodega Los Angeles
Stored here are the old soleras of the bodega Banda Playa, whose first proprietor was Don León Aldama Raspaldiza, the first Conde de Aldama. The old bodega has passed through various hands such as Antonio González Moreno, Valdespino and Manuel de Argüeso, and was in a dilapidated state, but Francisco Yuste managed to save three old soleras: Amontillado Dorotea (150 butts at around 200 years old – almost certainly the oldest wine in the region!), Moscatel IX Perlas and PX Corona. In total 840 butts are stored here.

The patio at bodega Los Angeles
There is a further bodega, Santa Ana with more wine, which like most of that stored in Los Ángeles is destined to be almacenista wine for trading to other bodegas. Yet another bodega was once owned by González Byass (presumably for their El Rocio which was once Viuda Manjon), and yet to house soleras. So keen on bodegas is he that Francisco actually lives in one and has his offices there in the Calle Regina, 49 which he renovated and which was once the bodega of Rainera Perez Marin La Guita. And in January 2016 he bought out the old firm of Argueso. He is not in a hurry. He wants to get his wines right and market them when times are better. As he puts it, now is the time to invest.

The wines:
Manzanilla en rama La Kika (Dedicated to Yuste’s mother, it is @ 8-9 yeras old).
Manzanilla Señorita Irene: A fresh fragrant wine from a fine solera
Manzanilla Aurora: Famous brand bought from Pedro Romero
La Monteria Range: More commercial but good, much goes to Japan.
Conde de Aldama Range: The oldest and finest Amontillado and Palo Cortado
Yuste also supplies small quantities of very fine Manzanilla Pasada seasonally to Antonio Barbadillo Mateos for his brand Sacristia AB.

Address: Bodega Miraflores, Carretera de Chipiona, Sanlucar de Barrameda, Cadiz
Telephone: (+34) 956 385 201
Visits: Yes but by prior appointment

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