Wine Wednesday: The House of Lustau

Today’s Wine Wednesday is about the House of Lustau’s wines which were part of a certification program which I completed this summer during the Society of Wine Educators annual conference. This historic family’s history began in 1896 with the planting of grapes on the family’s state – Nuestra Señora de la Esperanza by Emilio Lustau. HIs daughter María Ruiz-Berdejo Alberti bought a small winery closer to the center of Jerez de la Frontera in 1931 and by 1945, Emilio Lustau began selling wine it’s own wines and by 1950 under the family name. Fast forward to 1990 and the family house became part of the Luis Caballero group, a well-known Spanish company in the business. In 2000, the Lustau bought six historic 19th century Sherry buildings and restored them.

We were lucky enough to try different versions of Sherry, Fino, Manzanilla, Amontillado, Palo Cortado, Oloroso and Pedro Ximénez. During the class we were given a great Sherry pairing wheel with suggestions what to eat with which style.  I always eat almonds, preferably Marcona Almonds if available with Sherry but there are so many more distinct options from Olives with Amontillado to Grilled Vegetables with Fino, New York Strip Steak paired with an Oloroso or Pedro Ximenez with Chocolate, among others. We were also given a list of Sherry Cocktails.

I missed Sherry Week which gets a lot of people focusing on Sherry but I’m excited to think of this as a Sherry year when I will become more adventurous and perhaps get to use my newly minted certification as a Certified Sherry Wine Specialist, Intermediate level from the House of Lustau and the Sherry Regulatory Council.

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