• Fortify yourself – Manchester celebrates International Sherry Week

Fortify yourself – Manchester celebrates International Sherry Week

7 November 2017 by Neil Sowerby

SHERRY’S such a hard sell. You’ve got to admire the efforts of aficionados to promote it during the current International Sherry Week 2017 – in particular the efforts of Cork of the North’s Marc Hough to put this wildly undervalued fortified wine on the map.

The digital route he created below traces the independent wine merchants and bars which are holding events and offers on its behalf during the Week (November 6-12). 

Linking access to Metrolink stations, it has been updated to include Flok, new NQ ‘sherry bar’ in Stevenson Square, which is hosting a keynote ‘vertical matching lunch’ with top producer Valdespino on Thursday, November 9.

Throughout the week Manchester sherry spots will be featuring sherry wine flights, drop in tastings and Sherry food pairings. The Sherrylink route enables you to hop from venue to venue and sample the wares on offer without the need for a designated driver.

You can call in for a tasting at Reserve Wines at the newly open Mackie Mayor, attend a masterclass or sherry drop in session at Flok, as well as sampling sherry flights at Evuna. Plus why not pick up a bottle of two to take home from Reserve, Cork of the North, Salut or Hanging Ditch.

Manchester Food and Drink Awards Fine Dining Restaurant of the Year El Gato Negro, on King Street, has one of the best sherry lists in town. ToM asked them for some recommended food pairings and they suggested this trio:

Equipo Navazos, ‘I Think’ Manzanilla En Rama 2017: bottled ‘En Rama’ (meaning only lightly filtered) is a wonderful Manzanilla boasting fresh aromatics, a signature salty tang, plenty of acidity and a little lemon twist.  It is ideally paired with anchovies on crostini or Spanish charcuterie. £6 for a glass / £28 for a bottle.

Emilio Lustau ‘Don Nuño’ Oloroso: a wonderfully complex and intense sherry which has aged for 12 years in the bodegas of Jerez. Dark chocolate and walnuts on the nose, and a balance on the palette to match perfectly with the rich deep umami flavours of beef, onion and mushroom. Pair it with braised ox cheek with horseradish mash, baby onions, button mushrooms and pancetta. £45 a bottle.

Emilio Lustau Moscatel Emilin, Solera Familiar: made from the less common Moscatel grape, Emilin is aged in American oak for eight years. Characterised by a deep colour with intense floral aromas, figs, raisins and walnuts. Full-bodied and sweet but balanced with elevated natural acidity, a perfect dessert wine to match with sweet and fruity dishes. Match it with raspberry, white chocolate and lemon macaroons, fresh raspberries, white chocolate crumb and raspberry sorbet. £7 for a glass, £55 for a bottle.

A comprehensive list of Manchester Sherry Week events is here