& COOKING ARTICLE
the sherry of Spain with your tapas
website or book about tapas would be complete without
a page or two about sherry. It is a match made in heaven.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with wine, or beer,
or anything else that takes your fancy to have with
your tapas but until you try it with sherry, youre
missing out on a taste tradition going back thousands
first documented mention of sherry comes from 1 BC and
this source mentioned original vines brought by the
Pheonicians in 1100 BC!
things first: The Spanish do not call their wine sherry.
This is an anglicised version of the word Jerez
(which is pronounced hereth with
the accent on the second 'e').
be considered a genuine sherry a wine must
come from the sherry triangle which
is a region on the Atlantic coast of Anadalucia bordered
by the towns of Jerez de la Frontera, El Puerto de Santa
Maria and Sanlúcar de Barrameda.
Sanlúcar de Barrameda in the North
to Jerez de la Frontera to El Puerto de
Santa Maria in the South
no matter what it says on the bottle, anything else
is just fortified wine in the style of Jerez.
is a type of sherry for every kind of food and a little
understanding of whats available and what goes
with what will make your tapas experience even more
types of Spanish sherry
are three main types of widely-available sherry:
Plus a couple that are a bit different and harder to
with wine, the different regions are governed by the
Denominaciónes de Origen which control their
cover the main types first.
First we have the dry sherries Fino and Manzanilla.
These are pale in colour, bitingly dry and delicately
flavoured. The Manzanilla has a salty, nuttier taste.
They are primarily served as aperitifs before the
meal and with tapas as a starter. However, many Spanish
people drink these as a wine throughout the meal.
They are very versatile wines which go perfectly with
jamón, chorizo, mild cheeses, white fish and
Next up comes the medium-dry Amontillado. This is
a golden amber colour with a dry but nutty taste.
It goes well with poultry and game, robust cheeses
and oily fish like sardines and mackerel.
A darker, richer sherry but still a medium is the
Oloroso. This is perfect for red meats and stronger
and Pedro Ximénez
Finally comes the dessert sherries Moscatel and Pedro
Ximénez. These are both very sweet and are
perfect for desserts and blue cheeses. The Moscatel
is a softer wine and the Ximénez is a rich,
dark Spanish beauty in a glass!
Cortado and a Pale Cream
A couple of options for you to try are a Palo Cortado
and a Pale Cream. The Palo Cortado is a rare wine
which is a sort of cross between an Amontillado and
an Oloroso. Drink it with the richer foods like game,
strong cheeses, etc. Youll probably find the
Pale Cream more easily available. This is basically
a fino that has been sweetened. It
is an interesting flavour and goes well with rich
patés like foie gras, or try it with fresh
fruit and nuts.
A commonly-found sherry is the Cream. This is a dessert
wine in the style of the Ximénez but not so
rich - or expensive! Try it with sweets, pastries
and blue cheeses.
and storing your Spanish sherry
best sherry glasses are the thin, transparent copitas
which are designed especially for the job. They
are long-stemmed, to prevent your hands warming the
wine, and have a taper towards the top to funnel those
subtle and distinctive notes nicely to the nose.
fill the glass more than halfway or the wine will
not have a chance to blossom and release its aromas
as you swirl it around the glass. If
you cant lay your hands on some proper copitas
then a champagne flute would be the next-best alternative.
that just slosh some into a wine glass. You heathen!
But better to drink from a wine glass than not to
drink at all, thats what I say.
bottles of sherry are very susceptible to oxidisation
so should be stored upright, not laid down, in a cool
and dark place at an even temperature.
and Manzanilla should be bought fresh and used quickly,
within three months, as they do not last well in the
bottle. They should always be served chilled. Once
opened, keep in the refrigerator and consume within
a couple of weeks. These wines are very delicately
flavoured and lose their character very quickly once
can be kept in the bottle for two to three years but,
again, once opened, should be consumed as quickly
as possible. The ideal temperature to drink these
is a cool room temperature. However, once they have
been opened you should keep them in the fridge if
you dont have a cool place to keep them.
them cold is perfectly acceptable.
Olorosos, Creams and Ximénezes, being richer
and more aged, can be kept in the bottle for years,
depending on the quality of the wine. Once opened,
they can be kept for months in a cool place, or in
the fridge. But bear in mind that they should be served
at room temperature to appreciate them at their best.
Although a pale cream, or even a cream, on the
rocks is a delicious alternative.
sherry, once opened, should be stored upright with
their corks firmly in place to prevent oxidisation
and loss of flavour.
is, of course, a very simple answer to this problem
of storage and oxidisation. You simply prepare some
little dishes, get a few friends round
and open your best bottle of sherry. Then
throw the cork away!
better way to enjoy your sherry and tapas than the
proper Spanish way!
few sample tapas recipes to make and savour
Jamón, Tomate y Ajo con Pan - Ham, Tomato and
Jamón y Queso Tostadas - Grilled Serrano Ham
and Manchego Cheese Bruschetta
Calamares Fritos - Fried Squid
Gambas al Ajillo - Garlic Prawns
article is taken from the introduction to the web
site of Proper-Spanish-Tapas.com
and written by Steve who has created a fascinating
web site looking at this famous facet of Spanish cuisine.
28 July 2006
Hub-UK : email@example.com