Sherry sales are booming. Well, everyone loves an underdog
Amid the nostalgia-fest that is Christmas, news has broken that sherry – which many people will forever associate with that disgusting sweet liquor they sipped as a child from auntie’s glass when no one was looking – is suddenly terribly fashionable and selling like hot cakes. But to the sophisticates among you, this will be no revelation. In fact British appreciation of pale, dry sherries, which are nothing like the stuff granny served in dainty, cut-glass schooners, has been bubbling up for a decade, largely thanks to the rise in very good tapas restaurants.
Wednesday’s report points out that, along with sales going through the roof (M&S’s figures are already up a third on last year’s), specialist sherry bars are now popular: 35 opened in London alone over the past three years. This isn’t a bunch of students ironically knocking back a “blue-rinse” tipple – it’s young professionals sampling fine sherries in elegant wine glasses, which allow drinkers to appreciate the camomile and coastal aromas of their manzanilla.
What a turn-around – it isn’t that long ago that no one would have touched sherry with a barge pole…
Sack is an antiquated wine term referring to white fortified wine imported from mainland Spain or the Canary Islands. There was sack of different origins such as:
- Canary sack from the Canary Islands,
- Malaga sack from Málaga,
- Palm sack from Palma de Mallorca, and
- Sherris sack from Jerez de la Frontera
The term Sherris sack later gave way to Sherry as the English term for fortified wine from Jerez. Since Sherry is practically the only of these wines still widely exported and consumed, “sack” (by itself, without qualifier) is commonly but not quite correctly quoted as an old synonym for Sherry.
Most sack was probably sweet, and matured in wooden barrels for a limited time. In modern terms, typical sack may have resembled cheaper versions of medium Oloroso Sherry.
Today, sack is sometimes seen included in the name of some sherries, perhaps most commonly on dry sherries as “dry sack”. – Wikipedia