This year’s Bodegas Gonzales Byass tasting event for Tío Pepe en Rama 2016 was held on April 11th (lunes del pescaíto), at the Mercado del Barranco on Seville’s riverside. Although we weren’t too lucky with the weather, with the wind even knocking over a few glasses, master blender (and winemaker poet) Antonio Flores led us on a metaphorical sailing trip down the Guadalquivir river, from Sevilla to Jerez. As we listened to his accounts we sampled the three different sherry wines: Tio Pepe en Rama (fino), Viña AB (amontillado) and Leonor (palo cortado). When you pour the wine, close your eyes, smell the wine and then drink, it shows once again that sherry is not just another white wine, but has a strong connection to the south of Spain, its sunshine, the smell of the sea and the silence inside the bodega. The magic is always there, even when it is raining and the wind is blowing. Catering for the event was supplied by various stalls inside Mercado del Barranco.
Tío Pepe en Rama 2016 was first selected in October from 100 of the best casks from two of the oldest Tío Pepe soleras, Rebollo and Constancia, and finally bottled (16,000 in total) in April from the top 60 out of those initial 100 casks.
A wild unfiltered wine, with all its yeast and organic contribution. Yellow, pale, golden tones, cloudy (yeast in suspension). The nose is pure albariza, salinity, nuts, bakery aromas. Tasty, intense, long, salty and slightly bitter finish. Or as Antonio would say… el sol de Andalucía embotellado (bottled Andalusian sunshine).
Antonio Flores with Aldara