Have a Sherry Christmas with Gonzalez Byass…

As the festive season draws closer Peter Morrell takes a look at some food pairing recommendations by the team at Gonzalez Byass for their range of sherries

I consider sherry to be one of the world’s most underrated drinks. There are so many different types from fresh young finos to complex and rich aged Amontillados. I have been tasting some and listening to guidance from the Gonzalez Byass team. Here are some pairing suggestions for different courses of your festive meal.

Tio Pepe Fino & Smoked Salmon

The dry, palate-cleansing properties of Tio Pepe cut perfectly through the oiliness of smoked salmon. The citrus notes and pleasant saline finish of the Fino match beautifully with the richness of this Christmas classic. – 15% ABV

Widely available with an RRP of £10 for a 75cl bottle

Gonzalez Byass 30-Year-Old Apostoles VORS Palo Cortado & Chicken Liver Paté with chutney

Aged for an average of 30 years in barrel, this Palo Cortado-style sherry is blended with a small amount of Pedro Ximenez, giving it a delicate touch of sweetness. The dried fruit character in Apostoles works in perfect harmony with this chicken liver paté or any other meat-rich paté. – 20% ABV

Available from Ocado, Waitrose Cellar and Majestic online with an RRP of £19.99 for a 37.5cl bottle

Gonzalez Byass Leonor Palo Cortado & Turkey

Twelve years in the making, Leonor Palo Cortado is intense, complex and dry with nutty notes, making it a perfect partner for roast turkey and all the trimmings. – 20% ABV

Available from Oddbins and www.thewhiskyexchange.com with an RRP of £14.50 for a 75cl bottle

Editor’s Note: Notes of hazelnut, toast and toffee make this a well rounded sherry. It’s intensity and dry character makes it ideal to match with white meats.

Noe 30-Year-Old Pedro Ximenez VORS with Mince Pies (or served over vanilla ice cream)

This luxuriously rich Pedro Ximenez (PX) has a wonderful complexity as a result of an average of 30 years of ageing. The intense sweetness and raisin character is a bold match for mince pies – definitely not for the faint hearted! For a simple but delicious treat, pour Noe over good quality vanilla ice cream. – 15.5% ABV

Available from Ocado, Waitrose Cellar and Majestic online with an RRP of £19.99 for a 37.5cl bottle

Del Duque 30-Year-Old Amontillado VORS with the Cheese board

Aged for an average of 30 years, Del Duque Amontillado is intense and full of complex flavours. With its dried fruit character and hints of walnut, it stands up well to the mature cheeses and stronger flavours on your festive board. – 21.5% ABV

Available from Ocado, Oddbins and www.thewhiskyexchange.com with an RRP of £19.99 for a 37.5cl bottle

Editor’s Note: Caramel, apricots, nuts, dried and tropical fruit all crowd together in the bouquet to grab your attention. This immensely complex sherry continues to deliver on the palate with nutty tones, oak and spice. The finish is very long and persistent. Drink this either with cheese or on its own as a digestif.

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