Sunday, 1 March 2015

La Bota de Palo Cortado "Bota No" No. 41 22%, Equipo Navazos

Bright, fairly deep mahogany with slight reddish tints fading through yellow to a touch of green at the rim, slow legs.
Incredibly fragrant, complex and concentrated yet lively with sweet notes of cinnamon, caramelised orange peel, dried apricot, garrapiñadas, turron de yema tostada, toast, wafer biscuits, then saline hints, polished furniture, oak, cedar, leather, linseed oil, oil paint, very old yet very clean and fresh as a daisy. There are just too many nuances here to identify but they are all so exquisitely harmonised - honed into a quite beautiful and beguiling aroma which bursts out of the glass.
Powerful, tangy and dry, the structure is more obvious now and there's some tannin and acidity with traces of salinity and savoury walnut bitterness and wood. This is full-on and deeply tasty making one salivate. Yet quietly in the background there's that sweet side ready to help when the going gets tough, balancing things out to a perfectly balanced finish with interminable length. Superb.
This wine comes from a very small saca (hence half bottles) made in February 2013 of wine selected from the best butts of the centenarian GF 30 solera from Bodegas Gaspar Florido in Sanlucar. I gather that this solera once belonged to Benito Rodriguez La-Cave, whose family merged with Delgado Zuleta giving them the great Quo Vadis solera. The old firm of Gaspar Florido was bought by Bodegas Pedro Romero in 2007 and the GF 25 and GF 30 soleras were moved to Romero's "sacristy" which, by chance is not far from their original location.

The wines from these soleras were bottled by Florido as "Jerez Viejisimo" as in Gaspar's mind there is a blurring of style between Amontillado, Oloroso and Palo Cortado when they are extremely old. Equipo Navazos however, are convinced that this is definitely a Palo Cortado, and it scored 98 well- deserved Parker points from Luis Gutierrez.
About 79.00 per half bottle. Maybe 6 left in the UK from importer Rhone to Rioja who have just been taken over by Alliance Wines.

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