Wednesday, 21 March 2018

Amontillado Principe VORS 21.5%, Barbadillo

Antique mahogany with bright copper glints fading through amber to a hint of green at the rim.
Packed with toasted nuts and a hint of marzipan, old oak and a trace of "bodega" with saline notes balancing tantalisingly with hints of slightly caramel-like sweetness. It is extremely refined, fresh, lively and intense with considerable charm and sophistication, always backed with gentle oak notes.
Concentrated and full yet elegant at the same time, there are faint traces of smoke, beaches, hints of oak and lots of nuts. Suggestions of nutty dried fruit and almond in caramel sweetness balance with hints of unaggressive tannin and an element of salinity, and the whole is very generous, a wine to really get your teeth into! And very long, superb.
The wine began life as a Manzanilla in the Solear solera where it spent six years before spending two more years in the two-scale pasada solera. With eight years under flor, it was then re-fortified to 18° to begin the oxidative period and entered the Amontillado Príncipe solera, gaining another seven years and then entered the VORS solera in the bodega El Potro where it spent over twenty years in butts filled  “a tocadedos” (to the top) before bottling, having passed through nineteen scales. It must be exhausted! But it doesn’t show. Things used to be nice and simple; Príncipe was the superior Amontillado and the VORS was the top one, but Barbadillo have changed things so that now there are two versions of it: Príncipe 12 years old and Príncipe VORS. The same applies to the rest of the superior range and the VORS wines are now in half bottles sealed with a driven cork and wax and packed in a little black gift box, and it is more expensive than before. Still, I thought it would be worth another look. A total of about 2,000 half bottles are released in one annual saca.
44.80 euros per half bottle, Licores Corredera

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