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You so gotta know that I'm already in the throws of planning an entire Sherry Smorgasbord evening -- with a spread of eclectic eats, such as sushi, herring and olives, with a variety of Sherry pairings.
I guess great minds really do think alike. Itâ€™s uncanny how often wine writers all around the country write about the same thing at the same time. Iâ€™m not talking about the obligatory seasonal articles about Thanksgiving wines, New Yearâ€™s Eve bubbles, winter reds, and summer whites and rosÃ©s. Iâ€™m talking about seemingly totally random topics.
No less than three prominent wine writers have recently written about sherry: Florence Fabricant at the New York Times (Dec. 31, 2008), Jon BonnÃ© at the San Francisco Chronicle (Jan. 16, 2009), and, of course, you. Itâ€™s enough to make one think wine writers convene and agree, â€œOkay, we all need to start writing more about sherry.â€
I know itâ€™s coincidence (mostly), but it is amazing to me how often I have observed this phenomenon over the years.
I have read and heard (from Jancis Robinson when she was a guest on Gary Vaynerchukâ€™s Wine Library TV â€“ one of his longest and most interesting shows to date) that fino sherries should be drunk within 4 months of bottling. (The same is true of Vinho Verde) I think most people have less than optimal experiences with sherry because their samples are tipically too old.
You can usually decipher the bottling date from the lot number stamped on the back label. It will have something like L28508. The number is an ordinal date. The first three digits represent the day of the year and the last two digits represent the year. In this case, 285 = Oct. 11th. So, a bottle of sherry with this lot number would have been bottled on Oct. 11, 2008 â€“ over the hill by fino sherry standards.
By the way, Vinho Verde has a code on the back label, which can be entered at the official Vinho Verde Web site to get the bottling date.
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