Friday, 14 July 2017

Amontillado Partida Arroyo, González Byass

Very deep, intense brown mahogany with a trace of green at the rim.
Outstandingly complex and extremely concentrated yet very alive and attractive with autumnal notes of pipe tobacco and licorice, a trace of coffee and, of course, oak, which surprisingly is not excessive. At this age the differences between say Amontillado and Oloroso become rather blurred, but there was a definite note of nuts in that super complex bouquet.
A complete contrast to the nose. You can instantly tell it is very old. It is very concentrated and very dry, with crisp acidity and is really quite austere, hard to take for many, yet once a sip is swallowed, it begins to reveal some of the character of the nose in the aftertaste and then lingers almost forever.
What an experience! This wine is from a parcel of Amontillado bought by Manuel María González Ángel, founder of González Byass in 1835, and is therefore older than GB itself at about 200 years. Needless to say there is very little left and it is highly concentrated. It is only used for the occasional special tasting.
As it is not sold, it has no price, so it is priceless in both senses of the word.

It was served from bottles like this

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