Friday, 26 April 2019
Brandy Single Cask Solera Reserva 36.9%, Fernando de Castilla
Bright limpid antique chestnut or pale mahogany fading to amber with old gold highlights.
Full and rich yet fairly crisp, fresh and characterful with lots of aromas of fine Oloroso and the wood in which it was aged. The quality of the spirit shines through with all sorts of nuances such as a faint trace of buttery rancio, cinnamon, marmalade, a trace of dried fruits notably dates, caramel, a slightly oily nuttiness and a hint of juicy pipe tobacco.
Fresh with distinct Sherry undertones and a hint of brown sugar/caramel sweetness melded with the flavours of raisin and date. There is just enough tannin to give a little grip and it is beautifully balanced by the fruity sweetness of the spirit. This is a lovely lively characterful brandy which despite the up-front sweetness has a dry finish with terrific length.
Despite the excellent quality of the Sherries and vinegar, Rey Fernando de Castilla has always specialised in brandy with the intention of producing the very finest and don´t like to mess about with anything less than holandas. Among their products is an excellent single cask range, all one-off unique brandies, which are aged statically rather than in solera and selected by owner Jan Pettersen and hand bottled when they reach perfection at whatever age that might be. This one is made from 100% Airén grapes and aged in an old American oak Oloroso butt of 500 litres which yielded 680 x 50 cl bottles (or 340 litres), which shows how much "merma" (evaporation loss) there is in Jerez (about 5-7% per annum). It was bottled on 2nd October 2014 with an age of around 5 years.