Sherry is experiencing a good moment as it celebrates 80 years of the Consejo Regulador, the oldest in Spain, which was established in 1935 to provide a framework of protection against the Sherry imitators, a major worry from the end of the XIX century.
One notable success was the end of British “Sherry”, a case (El Pleito del Sherry) won with the help of a Moorish map from 1154 showing that Sherry was a geographical area and therefore nobody else could use the word. Consejo staff have obtained permission to reproduce this map which belongs to an Oxford library and it will form part of an anniversary exhibition to begin on the 4th September at the Claustros de Santo Domingo.
|Detail of El Idrisi map (drawn upside down)|
Beltrán Domecq, Consejo president, yesterday outlined the programme of commemorative activities. The preliminary programme – still with events to be confirmed - will start on the 10th July with the presentation of wines selected for bottling with commemorative labels, and will run till the end of November finishing with scientific days looking back at 80 years of Sherry history from the distinct perspectives of oenology, viticulture, architecture and more with the collaboration of the University of Cádiz and other institutions.
The logo for the 80th anniversary will be based on bodega cask markings – a horizontal arrow in black and white to resemble the white chalk on a black barrel, which, according to Consejo director, César Saldaña, signifies the future of Sherry. He said that the start of activities had been delayed a bit to avoid clashing with the 50th anniversary celebrations of Manzanilla which ended with the Feria in Sevilla.
|Beltran Domecq makes the announcement (foto:diariojerez)|
Samples have already been requested from the bodegas for the selection of wines to be bottled under the commemorative label which will be used for tasting masterclasses in the Alcázar and the Claustros as well as in the city of Cáceres which is Capital of Spanish Gastronomy 2015 and home to the restaurant Atrio which is representing Spain in the Copa Jerez.
On the 4th September, coinciding roughly with the Fiesta de la Vendimia (8-13 Sept)Detail of El Idrisi, the Claustros will see the inauguration of an exhibition of the 80 years of the Consejo’s history, and on the 12th there will be an 80th anniversary Gala with music from the sound track of the film El Misterio del Palo Cortado.
In October the Consejo will show the commemorative wines in Madrid and Barcelona and expects to also show them in Britain and the USA. César Saldaña said that with these events the Consejo hopes to recoup the deficit of the last 80 years, a period in which curiously, fewer historical, sociological etc. studies exist compared to the abundance of them in earlier times. The programme will be filled out with events both inside and outside Spain which will be announced when details have been finalised between the Consejo and the sponsors.
The final of the Copa Jerez VI edition will take place on the 9th June at the Hotel and Catering School in Jerez. Chefs and sommeliers from heat-winning restaurants in eight countries will contest the final with the finest possible food to match Sherry. The judges will be top level chefs, sommeliers and masters of wine. In parallel to the Copa Jerez, the Hotel school will hold an exclusive International Gastronomic Salon which will star the top chefs of Andalucía and offer the chance to taste Sherries from some 20 bodegas along with their dishes.