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Gonzalez Byass Sherrymaster attracts top international professionals to Jerez

For the fourth year running González Byass has held its prestigious Sherrymaster by Tio Pepe in Jerez. Bringing together a group of influential buyers from across the globe to join Master Blender, Antonio Flores and Fred Dame, renowned American Master Sommelier, and learn about Sherry in the heart of Jerez.

The Sherrymaster by Tio Pepe was launched in 2013 with the aim of bringing key influencers from around the world to the home of the world’s most famous Fino Sherry brand, Tío Pepe, to learn about this most fascinating fortified wine.

This wide ranging, educational course has been devised with sommeliers and buyers specifically in mind: the objective being to give them the opportunity to learn about Sherry at source, discovering the intricacies of the viticultural and vinification processes, the ins and outs of the Solera system and the secrets of such gems as the intriguing Palo Cortado, to mention just a few aspects that were included in the programme.

With guests from the USA, China, Canada, Germany, Belgium and the UK, this year’s edition of the Sherrymaster was chaired by Antonio Flores, Master Blender, accompanied by Fred Dame MS from the USA.

Commenting on the 2016 Sherry Master, Antonio Flores said, “The level of knowledge of each of the attendees this year was outstanding and we were delighted to welcome press and buyers, from both the on- and off-trade, to join us.” He continued, “Having a Master Sommelier like Fred with me on the panel brings an impressive blend of experience, expertise and enthusiasm to Sherrymaster. As the first American to have served as President of the Court of Master Sommeliers Worldwide, it is an honour to have him on board and we both hope that this year’s edition of the Sherrymaster will prove to be the best yet.”

Vinoble 2016

At the Alameda Vieja in Jerez, the last of the distinctive blue flowers have fallen from the Jacarandas, just as the tenth edition of the unique Salon Vinoble event decorated by these beautiful trees has drawn to a close.

Looking beyond the results of this event and the obvious improvements that are required for consolidating and strengthening the great brand that Vinoble still is today, I’d like to pass on my thoughts about Sherry and what we at González Byass have called the #SherryRevolution.

I don’t know whether it has affected everybody, or if some have got a bit lost, but the great tide that moves the world of Sherry today, has been seen from the el patio de San Fernando, to la Mezquita and el Molino, among people going out for a casual drink, or those more focused on tasting notes and bottles.

Sherry has been the centre of attention, a guest at the table of the three magical types: full-bodied, strong and naturally sweet, and it has been almost obliged to shine above everything else. The wineries have channelled all their efforts into creating new trends or basking in their most famous glories.

But Sherry has also triumphed in the expectant tasting sessions which were overwhelmed with enthusiasts eager to carry on pushing Sherry to the top of the wine tree. Important issues for debate arose, giving the sensation of being the launch pad for “something big”. Without doubt, we’ve got the wind in our sails and now is the time to make the most of it, this is the moment for Sherry.

The land has enthusiastically claimed its space in the current edition. Young oenologists who start to create great wines from the fields, new or rediscovered varietals which look for their place among the others, mysteries which have still not been revealed and always, at the end, the great legacy of these wines which are jewels in the crown.

The Haute cuisine, on the rise in our province, has also played its part as the greatest champion of our wines. In the hands of these chefs, the oenologists, converted in bullfighters, leave their creations “to chance”. They have to make them stand out, combining them with the incredible raw produce that the “great shopping basket” the south of Cadiz offers.

However, it hasn’t just been in the gardens of the Alcazar, but also in the city during lunch where the Vinoble movement has been noticed, with the Sherry Revolution more than living up to expectations, offering visitors, many of them with their lanyards round their necks, the best each house has to offer.

The Tasting Session which closed the event, although it was not widely promoted to keep it a surprise, placed Sherry once again in its rightful place as one of the Great Wines of the World, something we all know but should never forget to mention; one of the stars of shows such as this one.

In summary, two years of hard work and effort, so that the next edition of Sherry will once again be undisputed King on the throne.

MasterChef, the star show of TV1 and the Spanish version the worldwide success, has been in Gonzalez Byass’ historic cellars in Jerez

Gonzalez Byass Jerez opens its doors for one of the most high profile cooking shows at the moment, MasterChef. Competitors and the famous presenters of the show; Eva Gonzalez, Pepe Rodriguez, Samantha Vallejo-Nágera and Jordi Cruz, were guided through our historic cellars by Gonzalez Byass Chairman Mauricio González-Gordon and Master Blender Antonio Flores.

All were treated to a journey through this unique world with its exceptional wines, history and curiosities. From a tasting of the different types of wines by the hand of Antonio Flores to a lesson in the art of the venencia with Tio Pepe venenciador Paco Gandon. This special visit was topped off with the honour of signing one of the Gonzalez Byass casks housed here in Jerez.

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Following this intense immersion in the world of Jerez, Beronia became the host for the MasterChef team with a barbeque prepared with Beronia Reserva. Contestants were asked to prepare a lunch in the country to be matched with Beronia Reserva, the essence of our Riojan winery.

MasterChef is a talent contest looking for the best amateur chefs which has become famous worldwide. MasterChef Spain was first aired in 2013 and now attracts 20.000 applicants and máximum audience at prime time.

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The episode featuring González Byass will be aired on 18th May at 22.15.

 

Making the most of ‘Feria del Caballo’ in Jerez

The Feria de Jerez is an unforgettable experience on so many levels, and these tips will help those visiting for the first time to enjoy everything it has to offer.

The first thing you must know is that the Feria de Jerez is commonly known as the “Feria del Caballo” (The Horse Fair) and this beautiful animal is one of the main attractions. This city is not called “the cradle of the Carthusian horse” for nothing. You can admire the elegance of this particular breed from Jerez as they grace the streets of the Feria.

As the sun shines on the Real street, you can also marvel at the splendour of their beautifully decorated carriages and harnesses.

As an event of great importance, the Feria has its own particular dress code, with the famous flamenco dresses catching the eye. If there is one day at the Feria when the sight of all these flamenco dresses is most spectacular, it is on Wednesday, when Women’s Day is celebrated.

It’s worth remembering, however, that it can get quite hot at the Feria, so it is best to wear cool and light clothes, while at the same time staying smart.

The typical dance at the Feria is the Sevillana. It is divided into four parts, each one with different steps and hand movements.

More defiant and vivacious is the Rumba, which as the day wears on at this Fiesta, becomes more and more prominent. And if you’re interested in the relationship between Flamenco and Jerez, you can’t miss the Bulerias. It is well worth seeing this dance and feeling the energy of those who do it well.

As far as quenching your thirst at the Feria de Jerez, it would be a sin not to ask for a  Tio Pepe and share it with your friends while you catch up. For a refreshing alternative, try mixing it with Sprite and ice, finished off with a touch of spearmint and you get what we call a chilled out Tiojito.

We also recommend that you get to know one of the locals who can take you to the Casetas which, despite being less well-known, will allow you to discover the real star dishes of traditional Jerez cuisine, such as the Berza Gitana or Menudo; real comfort food that will keep you going for the day. If you want something quick the most typical snacks in the feria are serranito ( a small sandwich with pork, ham and green pepper), Spanish omelette and of course jamon!

In short, at the Feria de Jerez, you are sure to have a great time, from midday until the early hours of the morning. Of course, don’t forget to take a moment to rest and relax with a chilled Tio Pepe in the shade of the excellent Casetas!