The area around Cadiz is known as the Sherry Triangle, and we took the opportunity to check out two points of the triangle, El Peurto de Santa Maria and the very famous Jerez.
Santa Maria is a 30 minute ferry ride across the bay from Cadiz and we sailed on a day when the sea was like a mirror. Once in town we had time to get a coffee before the tour-visit we were going on. So we went into a nearby residential area and had the best Churros of the entire trip, 100% fresh and with the best chocolate sauce. Andrew has discovered another new food he loves.
The visit was to the Bodega Gutiérrez Colosía, a smaller family run operation. And it was the best choice. With only 4 of us on the English speaking tour, we got our introduction to the sherry making process and could easily ask questions.
And the tasting at the end was really useful in understanding the breadth of sherry styles. Here we had generous samples from the bone dry through to the super sweet Christmas-cake style. Our guide, said she and her friends liked the dry Oloroso. Being able to try and compare the varieties offered was really educational
We also wandered the streets of the town from the exceedingly ornate church, quaint streets and a Bull Ring.
The next day we went by train to Jerez, about an hour away. Slipping into morning Churro mode, we immediately headed for a busy spot where plenty of people were eating them. But when I asked for Churros the lady said no, and pointed to a picture beside the till that looked like churros to me – so I said yes. Turns out they only had Porras on offer – these are basically fatter churros — sooooo precise here.
After wending our way through the town looking at various shops, markets, and buildings we got to Tio Pepe or more formally now known as Gonzalez Byass. Here we found full-on tourism with queues and queues of people, zooming around on a tourist train, followed by a walk through the barrel halls
Their barrels had been signed by a range of famous visitors from Hollywood, to Sports stars and British & Spanish royalty
For our tasting experience we chose to have 4 sherry with tapas option instead of the default standard offer of 2 sherries. Our tasting the day before had given us much more information and a wider range of styles. On the plus side today was the very generous pours. Felt a bit “sherried” afterwards as we weaved our way back to the train station.