Blandy’s Aged 5 Years Sercial Dry Madeira ($24.99)
Blandy’s Aged 5 Years Sercial Dry Madeira is an attractive clear bronze color, with sunny reddish-orange glints against the light. Good pecan and walnut scents against a subtle backdrop of juicy lemon. A hint of brown sugar sweetness shows on the first sip, but it quickly gives way to the drying impact of very tart, lemony acidity. Subtle nuts and lemon hang on in a long finish. Fortification brings its alcohol level up to 19%, typical of the genre. U.S. importer: Premium Ports & Madeiras, San Francisco. (Jan. 25, 2023)
FOOD MATCH: Its natural place is tasted on its own as an aperitif or while snacking on nuts and dried fruit, although the winery declares that “it is excellent as an aperitif but is also exceedingly good with starters, fish dishes and Indian cuisine.” I’d be willing to try that, although caution would be advisable if you sip this high-alcohol potion with a fiery vindaloo.
WHEN TO DRINK: Madeira will last essentially forever, and its high alcohol content holds it with little change, as it was originally intended to survive a long ocean voyage to London.
My local price is in line with Wine-Searcher.com’s $26 average U.S. retail, a price that’s more than competitive for a fine fortified wine.
Here’s an English language fact sheet from Blandy’s Portuguese distributor, Portugal Vineywards.
FIND THIS WINE ONLINE:
Check prices and find vendors for Blandy’s Aged 5 Years Sercial Dry Madeira on Wine-Searcher.com.
You’ll find a detailed article about Blandy’s and its history on this Wine-Searcher link. Scroll down to browse the wines in Blandy’s portfolio and check vendors and prices.
Follow this Wine-Searcher link for more Maderia Sercial bottlings, with listings for dozens of other wines using this variety.