Sunday, 6 July 2014

Oloroso Dulce Matusalem VORS 20.5%, Gonzalez Byass

Very deeply coloured, almost black at the edges through burnt umber to old amber with a trace of green at the rim, slow legs.
Deep and quite intense, strong aromas of old butts in a bodega, perfectly balanced Oloroso and PX with lots of pasa, date, American oak, cinnamon and a trace of candied orange peel. There are also hints of freshly roasted coffee. Really complex and amazingly well integrated for a blend.
The concentration comes through first, old Oloroso, old butts and coffee, then the sweetness arrives but without going too far. There is so much flavour you hardly notice it, but it is full of pasa and date without ever obscuring the Oloroso, whose phenols neatly balance it. Beautifully textured and very long. Superb.
Matusalem is one of GB's Rare Old Solera Wines. It is a blend of 75% Oloroso and 25% PX from GB's own Macharnudo and Carrascal vineyards, aged separately for 15 years then blended and put into an 1847 solera where it spends the next 15 years. Sugar content is around 130 grams/litre. The wine is quietly called "Cream" on the back label in tiny lettering as the old term "Oloroso Dulce" has been prohibited since 2012. Producers of wines of this level of quality would prefer not to use the term "Cream" as it might be taken to imply a cheap sweet blend. Still, if Cream can be this good, they should be shouting about it! 93 Parker. It might interest you to know that the Scotch distillers Whyte & MacKay age some of their single Malt "The Dalmore" in Matusalem casks. Quite how these casks can be spared, I would love to know...
Per half bottle, around £17.00. UK distributors Gonzalez Byass UK.

1 comment:

  1. Used to be that sherry bodegas would label a slightly sweet oloroso like that as amoroso. G-B's Solera 1847 is the budget version.