One of my favourite new discoveries from Spain...does as it says on the label: 'original intense white from Pedro Ximenez'.
What is it? Basically an off-dry white table wine made from super-ripe grapes (alc just 12.5%).
Origin: In Jerez, Andalusia...but not fortified.
How is it made? PX grapes are left on the vine for an extra 21 days. After fermentation, aged for 4 months on its lees (dead yeasts) in old American oak barrels with 'soft battonage' (stirring of the lees).
Who makes it? Made by the fantastically original Ximenez-Spinola who were founded in 1729! Their vineyards are on chalky soils of Las Tablas near the mouth of Guadalquivir river - near Jerez de la Frontera and Sanlucar de Barrameda. Ximenez-Spinola only make wines from PX grapes - which is now very unusual in Jerez. Today most PX grapes are grown in warmer drier Montilla-Moriles region, 150km from Jerez, just south of Cordoba.
Taste: Golden colour, figgy raisiny nose, brioche, nuts & honey, fresh acidity beautifully balanced with natural sweetness.
Serving suggestion: Try with slow roast pork or even a triple-cream Brillat Savarin cheese for a bit of cross-culture.
Where to find it: Available from Alliance Wine, Noble Green Wines, Luvians Bottle Shop, The Whisky Exchange & others.