Browse Tag


Gallina milk

[label]Lustau “Almacenista” Oloroso Pata de Gallina “Juan Garcia Jarana” 1/38 (Jerez) – Rich brown spices tinged with molasses, slow-baked stone fruit, fuzzy earth tones, and a certain gelatinousness. The wine comes in rolling waves, but those of a receding tide; the spaces in between are a little bare, leaving only a thick film of sweetness in their wake. I’ve always said that I appreciate sweeter styles of oloroso, and this is quite good (albeit probably not quite worth its tariff), but it would be better with a little less covering sugar. (4/09)

The Master

[label]El Maestro Sierra Oloroso Sherry “15 años” (Jerez) – Frankly, this is a difficult wine for me, and I’m not sure I can do it justice. Intense almond aromas – but more the shells and skins than the sweeter nuts within – and the usual arid, almost-mold-but-more-ancient-than-that, topnote, but with more space and singularity than I’m used to. Then, a stark dryness that tastes…well, it tastes like a decaying building. I suppose that doesn’t make much sense, but try to think what the Acropolis might taste like, were it to suddenly become consumable rather than viewable. Absolutely planar throughout, and eventually I begin to suspect that the wine’s finish doesn’t ever actually end, but just continues to some sort of infinitely-distant asymptote. An extremely intellectual sherry. I think it might be terrific. I’m not sure I like it. Obviously, I need someone to explain it to me, and then we’ll see. Or not. (12/08)

Up & up

[bottle]Alvear Montilla-Moriles Oloroso “Asuncion” (Andalucía) – Very intense, full of old spice and dried-out dates, both hollowed out by the antiquing of ultra-aged wood (I’m not talking about the winemaking here, but the organoleptics). Peppery complexities and a fuller, almost fruit-related character add to the finish. Very interesting. (5/08)