The González Byass Vintage Palos Cortados are a pure oenological treasure… a prodigious synchronicity… a true Time Capsule. How can we preserve, in wine, that special and personal memory that we do not want to forget? With its vintage wines, the Tio Pepe Bodega establishes an unforgettable link with a Client who is subsequently converted into a Friend, based on a bond that is signed and sealed by none other than the President of the Company. Generations of a Wine family insure the preservation of every detail that marks this occasion. The minutest detail will be distilled with a “vintage” touch, produced by hand, in order to record, in gold, that Chapter of the Small But Great Story that is so special to each of us.
This story begins in the old Tasting Room at the González Byass Bodega, where the most absolute essence of this company is jealously guarded. The Vintage Sherry Wines are a true oenological treasure, which this Wine Family has coddled from its inception in 1835. Since then, there has always been a portion of the harvest that is set aside in order to age it as part of this collection of vintages.
In the González Byass bodegas in Jerez, Antonio Flores, Master Blender, is preparing to conduct an “en rama” extraction of wine. However, since the last series of extractions there has been a change noted. If in the first years the criterion was to discover great Olorosos, after the 1978, 1979, and1982 vintages, there began a search for that Palo Cortado characterized by its delicate nature, its elegance…a most extraordinary cask which is almost eternal….
Our episode begins with a person huddled in the quietest corner of their home, surfing the internet: They have just launched their message in a bottle, via their search engine in order to find “Andalucía”, “Jerez”, or simply to evoke the memory of that lunch where they were surrounded by friends and at which they felt like they could breathe the happiness….
And, so, their message in a bottle arrives to the González Byass Online Store, more specifically to the Special Editions section. Each person looks for “their” specific year; that year that brings back a memory that is more than special. We are talking about an experience that was absolutely intimate and personal to them. That is why they are now at the González Byass Vintage section …
Like Antonio Flores says, “when someone enters into the González Byass webpage and requests one of our Vintages, they create a bond that, from that point on, will last forever.”
The González Byass team has just received the request via the Online Wine Shop. From there it is passed on to Bottling. At the “Las Copas” Bodega central office, the workers with the most experience will complete the next link in the process chain. Antonio, has been involved for 41 years in this part of the process which continuous to be done by hand.
After filling the bottle, its cork closure is affixed. This cork now bears the inscription that will identify it and the bottle: “Vintage Sherries”. The sealing wax is melted on a burner, aside the one upon which the raw material for the color is also being heated.
For the Vintage Wines, the color red has been selected because it provides an aesthetic and noble touch. On other occasions though, it was prepared in black, or blue, for example for the current King Phillip VI, when he was still a Prince.
The neck of the bottle is introduced into the melted wax solution, at its maximum temperature. The excess at the end is removed and it is given a rapid turn, but at the same time a delicate one, so that the finish acquires a perfect aesthetic appearance.
With the González Byass emblem the wax seal is personalized, even though it is still very hot. Once it has cooled, the bottles are placed on a special, hand-made, wooden rack for labeling. The labeling procedure is accomplished by hand, by a worker seated on a small bench.
Noted on a hand-written piece of paper, fixed above the highest part of the rack´s support frame, are the exact measurements for affixing the label at the proper height on the bottle. After the front label is affixed, the rear label follows.
Once the process is finalized, the bottle is allowed to dry in order to avoid the possibility of it adhering to the fine tissue paper in which the bottle will be wrapped for its final presentation. The bottle will be accompanied by an envelope with two letters signed by Mauricio González Gordon, González Byass President, which fully explain the Company´s perspective on the intrinsic value of Tio Pepe Bodega Sherry Wines . They are entitled “Vintage Sherry Wine” and “The González Byass Collection of Sherry Wines,” respectively. Along with them, there is a response-receipt card.
The entire masterpiece is placed in an attractive and luxurious presentation case, upon which the stamped name leaves no doubt: “González Byass: Jerez de Añada – Vintage Sherry.” A small portion of transparent adhesive serves as a second seal. Its final destination is a shipping carton, where this Treasure Chest, this Time Capsule, will be carefully placed, in the safest and most stable manner possible, for its immediate shipping.
It is now the moment for the arrival of this unique vintage to the Client´s home. All that remains is to just open it and enjoy it, with the exception of one small obligation: the return of the completed response-receipt card, in order to place it in the González Byass Historical Archive. Once there, its personnel will open the envelope, and they will incorporate the name of that person in a special Registry Book, within which there awaits a personalized page for each Client.
“The Vintage Sherry Wine of the ……Year has been sold to ….” After this, González Byass solidifies its more than special bond with each person. We are talking about an emotion-based fusion: immediately, this Client is transformed into a Friend – a life-long friend, who sought to incorporate a chapter of his Small But Great Story into that story which encompasses various González Byass generations.