|The welcoming comittee (foto:DiariodeJerez)|
Sunday, 12 August 2018
12.8.17 "Seasick" Palo Cortado Returns to Cádiz
Built in Cádiz in 1927, the Juan Sebastián Elcano, is a beautiful four-masted vessel used as a training ship by the Spanish Navy. In its 90 years it has sailed some 1.7 million nautical miles and docked in 71 countries. It returned on Saturday to its home port after a training exercise lasting nearly six months during which time it called in at Funchal, Las Palmas, Rio de Janeiro, Montevideo, Buenos Aires, Ushuaia, Punta Arenas, Valparaiso, El Callao and Charleston, acting as a sort of floating embassy. Meanwhile an old bronze cannon dated 1801 was found in excellent condition in the water of the docks during routine works days before the ship returned, luckily it was not loaded.
Below the ship’s decks were two butts of González Byass Palo Cortado XC from the 1990 vintage selected by Antonio Flores for an experimental revival of the old tradition of sending wine on a sea journey to improve it. He described the wine as having “reached its peak, one step from glory” so it will be very interesting to see how it has turned out. It will be bottled in time for next year’s 500th anniversary celebrations of the first circumnavigation of the globe. Magellan set out from Sanlúcar in 1519 with five ships, but only one made it home, captained by one Juan Sebastián Elcano. The wine will be called Palo Cortado XC De Ida y Vuelta (there and back); it is unlikely to be cheap however.