Every year, when January’s winds hit, and the temperatures settle down to numbers that are far too low for my liking, my thoughts wander to exotic places. I see sun-drenched vistas in my mind’s eye, I watch spaghetti Westerns to warm up, and I hibernate with something inspiring to sip: like a delightful Oloroso Sherry from the windy, sun-soaked southern coast of Spain. (more…)
Posts Tagged ‘flor’
Posted in Food History, Wine, tagged amontillado, El Puerto de Santa María, fino, flor, Gutierrez Colosia, Jerez, Jerez de la Frontera, Manzanilla, Muscatel, oloroso, Palomino, Pedro Ximénez, Sanlúcar de Barrameda, Sherry, solera, Wine on January 10, 2014 | 10 Comments »
Posted in Beverages, Food History, Food Science, Pairings, Spain, Wine, tagged amontillado, El Maestro Sierra, fino, flor, Jose Antonio Sierra, oloroso, Pilar Pla Pechovierto, Sherry, Spain, Wine on April 22, 2013 | Leave a Comment »
Sherry (“Xerez” in Spanish) is made in the region of the same name on the southern tip of Spain near Gibraltar. There, Palomino grapes are grown on chalky soils called albariza. The grapes are fermented into dry wines, then fortified and placed into large, 500L oak barrels. Some of these barrels develop a thick layer of yeast called flor (literally “flower”).
Flor is naturally occurring, unpredictable, and can’t be induced or controlled once it occurs! When it does form, the wine ages underneath without oxidizing, resulting in what is known as a fino Sherry. If the flor forms, but then dies off or doesn’t develop, the wine, if deemed rich and robust enough, is fortified a bit more and then allowed to slowly oxidize and become an amontillado. If a flor does not form at all, the wine will be fortified further and will be aged in wooden barrels to become a richer and darker oloroso Sherry. In the case of amontillado and oloroso styles of Sherry, exposure to oxygen turns the wine a coppery color, and encourages the development of toasty, nutty aromas. Yum. (more…)