This wine is a legend. It is a Pedro Ximénez made from the first grapes harvested after World War II in Montilla-Moriles, the neighbouring area of the D.O. Jerez-Xéres-Sherry, specialized in Pedro Ximénez.

Of course Bodegas Toro Albalá have plenty of really old wines in their portfolio, including an even older 1910 vintage and upcoming 1929 and 1955 vintages, but this Don P.X. Convento 1946 vintage was one of the first three sherries ever to receive 100 points in Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate.

It’s a sweet wine, made from grapes that are dried in the sun (a process called soleo) before being pressed. That way, the must will only partially ferment and high levels of sugar will remain in the wine. It is then rectified with grape alcohol, it rests for around a year in inox tanks before being decanted and poured into barrels for maturation.


Nose: The first thing that struck me was the wonderful smell of cinnamon rolls and Belgian speculoos. Bread pudding. Lemon grass, candied ginger and cardamom as well. It’s a sweet nose alright, but the savouriness is remarkable, as well as the fragrant touches (think bergamot and rose petals). Goes on with sultanas and black cherries with a chocolate coating. Blackcurrants. Fig syrup. Not a lot of oak, but you can sense a kind of oriental, polished wood. Waxed sandalwood and cigar boxes. There’s also a slightly medicinal layer, something in between camphor and menthol. Even hints of petrol. Great sweet and sour balance overall.

Taste: Sweet and sour again, in a generally soft way, Madeira style, a real prolongation of the nose. Not cloying at all – hardly any plain wood either. In no particular order: mocha, black olive paste, brown sugar crumble, cinnamon rolls (again, big time)… Raisins but also raspberries and cherries, giving this an exquisite freshness and brightness. Almonds in the background. Hints of After Eight as well. Very rich but also very elegant. My only (small) remark would be that the finish is very enjoyable, but not quite as infinite as I expected.