Sherry is a foody’s dream wine. It’s a bit weird though in that until you really get into Sherry, it’s nearly impossible to drink and enjoy without food. It’s not that it’s not nice stuff, it’s just that over the years we’ve got used to the idea of what we think a white wine (or a brown wine) should taste like. If you’ve spent your days drinking Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay then Sherry will smell and taste like nothing you’ve had before!!
Sherry is made to be really neutral as a wine until it gets aged. The smells and the tastes are completely from the ageing process. It can be sharp yeast flavours as in Fino, or complex oxidative toffee and caramel like in Oloroso. Or it could be like Amontillado, which is slap bang in the middle. Sniff it and taste it on it’s own, see what you think.
After you’ve done that all I want you to do is crack open a packet of almonds and olives. That’s it. Nothing fancy. But try the wines with these nibbles and you’ll see how quickly it all changes! Afterwards, go off and make all the tapas style food you like.
The Pedro Ximenez is a bit different, as this is a seriously sweet and full bodied dark wine. Dried fruits and toffee and molasses and all those kind of smells. Best thing here is a couple of scoops of vanilla ice cream. That’ll do you.
So almonds, olives, and vanilla ice cream. I think we can manage that!
photo from www.lartedegliantipasti.it