Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Cream Isabela 17.5%, Valdespino

Deep blacky walnut mahogany to amber at the rim
Serious. Slightly savoury and while there are the expected notes of fruity pasas and caramel there is more of an aroma of old Oloroso with hints of oak, tobacco, toasted almonds, walnuts, figs, well used old barrels and traces of umami, and even chocolate. Most attractive.
Rich, structured and complex with a perfect balance of PX sweetness and serious Oloroso, seamlessly intertwined and in favour of the latter. There is an attractive lushness with a slight toffee note and wonderful texture, and even a trace of tannin. The wine has a tightly honed yet supremely elegant character and is not excessively sweet, it is all about flavour.
Isabela is a comparative newcomer to the Valdespino range. It was commissioned by José Estévez, founder of Grupo Estévez, as a tribute to his beloved wife, Isabel Puerto, not long after the acquisition of Valdespino in 1999, though it did fill a gap in the range. Being Valdespino it is of fine quality and comes from a centenarian solera which has always blended Oloroso with Pedro Ximénez. The ratio is around 75% Oloroso and 25% PX giving 130g/l sugars, and the wine really shows that being blended from the start in an old solera makes all the difference in terms of complexity and homogeneity. It has an average age of over 15 years. Cream Sherry might be regarded as the root of all Sherry's problems, but when it is as good as this, and it is really good, well one thinks of forgiveness. Proper Sherry, just a bit sweeter.
7.95 euros, Licores Corredera

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