Inland from the coast, Montilla-Moriles does not feel the influence of the sea as greatly as Jerez. In the warmer climate, the wines tend to be more unctuous and ripe. In this case, the pedro ximénez has been vinified under flor, which gives it an inescapably salty flavor that overpowers the candied apricot and prune fruit. In the end, it’s a dry, delicious sherry for jamón serrano.
The NV Fino Gran Barquero is aged 8-10 years under flor, pushing the limits of biological aging, which gives it a different profile: It is a big step up in quality, but it would probably be better with less filtration. It has a fresh, flowery nose hinting at some citric and even tropical fruits intermixed with the dry hay, straw, yeasty and chalky notes. It has the profile of a serious, first-class Fino that shows in a clean, pungent, balanced palate, with incisive flavors, supple and long. A good-value, great Fino that could develop some more complexity in bottle. Drink 2013-2016. (LG)
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