Filed under: Spirits
When the cold outside has us seeking warmth, there's nothing warmer than the feel of a fortified wine. The following ten-five Madeiras and five Ports-will not only warm you, they will make you feel pampered and fed.
Madiera is the wine that never dies. That's because of its singular process that literally cooks the wine to near-Pasteurization. The result is that each type of the five major Madeira wine styles is underlined as caramelized. Because the wines never die, try some of the older vintages listed by the Rare Wine Company Madeira importers. Don't worry. Once you open it, you do not have to finish the bottle for years to come.
Barbeito Sercial 1988 ($90.00)
The driest Madeira style, Sercial is pale in color. It is aged for at least eight years before release, which deepens its color somewhat. Contrary to the "sticky" moniker, when served slightly chilled, Sercial makes for a great aperitif and can also be paired with seafood as well as with dried fruits and nuts.
D'Oliveira Verdelho 1973 ($110.00)
Verdelho is golden-hued, medium-bodied, with sweetness up front and a dry finish. Tradition has it that you serve Verdelho with fruitcake, but it does equally well with fruit or cake individually, not to mention nuts, which is standard Madeira pairing material.