A gorgeous Amontillado. Round and powerful in the mouth with flavors of lemon honey, dried apple, salt cured green olives and Filbert nuts. Dry, with a richness that substitutes for sweet (from the near 15 years of aging: 8 under the flor, 7 without). Extremely versatile in your evening (with dinner, or before with cheese & nuts, or after with cheese & nuts), I prefer it as my nightcap.

 

Barbadillo is a big operation with many arms (different wines and labels, including private label wines) but you don’t see too often in the U.S., especially in California. While it’s very popular in Spain, Japan, the U.K and Belgium particularly, the U.S. is not “hip” to Sherry in general. The myriad styles and understanding of each merits a semester-long class, which is part of the issue. What other wine region can lay claim to both “Granny sippers” and millennial wine geeks and mixologists as key customers? It would be a better world if more of us appreciated good Sherry like Barbadillo.