It's Sherry Week from the 6th -12 November 2017 and to celebrate, a selection of bloggers around the world have been asked to come up with a recipe to pair with a mystery bottle of Sherry sent to us by the promoters of Sherry Wine Week- I was thrilled at the chance to try something new, but first I had to ask a very important question.
Is Sherry vegan?
Some is. Some isn't.
To improve the shelf life and appearance some sherries are 'fined'- clarified or filtered, with any of the following; egg white, fish swim bladders or bone char. This process removes impurities, excess yeast and helps stabilise the sherry creating a more consistent product. There is no trace of what is used to filter the sherry left in the finalised product, but as an animal product is used in the process, it means these sherries are not vegan.
It's not all bad news!
The good news is, there are types of Sherry that are unfiltered. In fact, these are becoming more popular, along with the rise of the raw wine movement. You can identify an unfiltered Sherry by looking for it sold 'en rama' . En Rama means raw, or in the barrel and is the attempt to bottle the wine as close as possible as you would taste is just out of the barrel. Just like with raw wine, the natural yeasts which the sherry is fermented with are left in the bottle, which creates a more interesting & genuine flavour profile. This is the kind of wine I like to drink, and it's becoming increasingly popular.
Vegans should look for Sherry sold 'En Rama'
I'm really glad I asked if the Sherry that I could pair my food with was vegan, as it's allowed me to try the very first organically grown, Manzanilla sherry ever! Called Entusiastico, this unique organic sherry is made by the oldest winery within the Sherry (Jerez) Region, Delgado Zuleta. It's a product of a collaboration with an organic grower José Cabral and is their first organic wine. Only 1200 bottles were made (I'm SO LUCKY!) however they are at the vanguard of a new movement to create more organically grown sherries, and have plans to expand their production. I'm SO very excited to find out more about as they are released.
This isn't your Nan's Christmas Tipple.
In fact, chuck everything out that you think about sherry and be prepared for some amazing taste sensations. The bottle I was sent was dry, best served slightly chilled and had a lush hint of sun ripened raisins and a lovely long mineral finish. Perfect for sharing and drinking alongside some savoury snacks or canapes.
Want to know more about the wines of Jerez?
All this week, follow the hashtag #sherryweekblog,#sherryweek & #sherrylover or find out more over on the Sherry Week Website discover how amazing Sherry wine can be.
And don't forget to stop back here & find out what exactly I have cooked up to pair with my quite frankly delicious organic, raw, unfiltered Sherry Wine , Entusiastico from Delgado Zuleta.
*Disclaimer: This product sample was sent to me by the promoters of Sherry Wine Week as part of the Sherry Week promotion. I have not been paid for this review. All views are my own.