Behind the Cork™ - González Byass La Copa Vermouths


González Byass La Copa Vermouth — Extra Seco & Rojo - ($24.99 each)

While Vermouth can be the perfect addition to any cocktail, these Vermouth offerings from González Byass really shine on their own.

Vermouth, as described in a recent blog, is actually a fortified wine. A highly aromatic fortified wine with botanicals that include herbs, bark, roots, citrus and spices with the Wormwood plant being the classic ingredient.

The González Byass La Copa (meaning the cup) Extra Seco Vermouth is a white extra dry version (28 g/L residual sugar) produced from 100% Palomino grape that is aged for an average of three years in the traditional Solera System of American oak casks. It exhibits a clean and elegant intensity with concentrated citrus aromas along with the bitter touches of Wormwood. It’s an ideal aperitif, served over ice, but can also be blended with soda or used as part of many classic cocktails.

The González Byass La Copa Rojo Vermouth is a red version produced with 75% Palomino grape and 25% Pedro Ximénez grape that is aged for more than eight years in Soleras. With Wormwood again playing a staring role, this Rojo Vermouth also includes botanicals such as clove, orange peel, nutmeg and cinnamon. The resulting bitter-sweet (141 g/L residual sugar) and savory flavors of this Vermouth include classic cola flavors to go along with all the spiciness. It too is an ideal aperitif, served over ice, but can also be blended with soda or used as part of many classic cocktails.

Both of these La Copa Vermouth offerings from González Byass are delicious either on their own or as part of your favorite cocktail. Cheers!

Disclosure of Wine Sample Submission: I received this wine at no cost for review. The opinions expressed are entirely my own.

Samples provided by Rebekah Polster of Donna White Communications

Ever Wonder? - The Solera System of Winemaking


Last time we learned that Marsala wine is not just for cooking. It’s actually a fortified wine that is sometimes made using the Solera system.

A Solera is a system used for blending wines and is a way of keeping a consistent style of wine for years.

The diagram illustrates the system as a stack of barrels with the oldest barrels of wine on the bottom and the youngest barrels of wine on top.

Wine is bottled from the barrels on the bottom, but these barrels are never drained more than part-way. After being partially drained for bottling, the bottom row of barrels is refilled with wine from the row above, and those are filled with the wine from the barrels above them. And so on until the newest vintage enters the top row and begins its aging journey down through the system, being blended each year by the winemaker.

Since the barrels are never completely drained, the oldest barrels on the bottom always contains some of the original vintage used in the Solera.

The Solera system is not only used for Marsala wines, but also for other fortified wines such as Port. And, this can also be used in the production of non-vintage sparkling wines. So, if you’ve ever wondered how a winery can produce such a consistent non-vintage product year-after-year, they may be using some form of this system.