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sled's sherryphotos by Sledpress

They say it’s better to give than to receive, and all I can say about that is that I had so much fun putting this together, frustrating glitches notwithstanding, especially as several people ended up ensuring a very happy ending. Some background…

Ever since my Sherry Epiphany on the first World Sherry Day I’ve become intent (obsessed?) about sharing the sherry love in the way I discovered that day was really the best way to learn about sherry… poco á poco, with friends and with a few tapas. And I know that my friend Kate (sledpress) has been intrigued by my now popular Introduction to Sherry tours and also by my many tweets and blog posts about sherry events I end up at and the bodegas that I visit. So when I realised it was going to be Kate’s big 6-Oh birthday in November I decided to send her a selection of my favourites, one bottle for each decade, to begin her sherry education. Which turned out to be a lot more complicated than I thought it would be.

I contacted some of my favourite bodegas, finally settling on the one (which shall remain nameless) that promised me the full range I wanted with no problem of the delivery being made in time for the big day. Well, the big day came and went. I had been constantly checking up on this and each time was told that the order was being processed and there was nothing to worry about. Until the umpteenth email informed me that the order hadn’t actually been placed in the States and instead I would have to send the six bottles from Spain with a shipping cost of 120 euros. WTF?  Meanwhile, I had been back in touch with other bodegas and two of them came through big time, giving me the names of their distributors near Kate. BUT, then it turned out that neither had the full range I wanted to send, and one was actually a wholesaler so it didn’t seem like this was going to work out after all as I obviously wasn’t going to buy a case of each sherry. And then a wonderful thing happened. The wholesaler and retail outlet got together and, with their help, this is what Kate received just two days later…

sherry for sledBodegas Lustau: Manzanilla Papirusa, Palo Cortado Península, Pedro Ximénez San Emilio
Bodegas Gutiérrez Colosia: Fino, Amontillado and Oloroso

These two bodegas couldn’t be more different. Lustau is one of the largest wineries in the sherry triangle, comprising several bodegas in Jerez and Sanlúcar de Barrameda. Gutiérrez Colosia is family run – and I mean run by the four family members and a couple of employees – in El Puerto de Santa María (remember the video?). But when I got in touch with the people I know at both bodegas they were quick to respond and help me out, as were their fabulous distributors, Elite Wines and UnwinedVA. Special thanks goes to Vanessa at Unwined who – countless emails later – patiently put all this together is that cute green bottle carrier and got it over to Kate’s in time for the weekend. Mil gracias a todos! And now it’s time for me to start educating Kate. This is going to be fun!  🙂

If you want to know more about the wonderful world of sherry, follow me on Twitter @SevillaTapas and also on my AzaharTravels and AzaharSevilla blogs. You know you want to…