About the wine
The vineyards in Jerez are unique to the area. The soil in Jerez is majority Albariza. a white soil which contains up to 60% chalk. Therefore it has a large capacity for maintaining moisture, very important given the long, hot and dry summers as irrigation is prohibited. The area has a unique microclimate influenced by the surrounding Atlantic ocean and the rivers Guadalquivir and Guadalete. The prevailing winds are moist and warm, and now and again dry and hot Levante winds from north Africa. Temperatures are warm, with an average of 70% humidity and annual rainfall of 600 liters/m2. The harvest in Jerez begins mid August and generally lasts for 3 weeks maximum. The Pedro Ximénez grape, although a white grape, is treated slightly differently as it is destined for sweet wines. The grapes are collected from the vine slightly later and they are then sundried in a process called ´soleo´. For this the bunches are laid out on esparto mats in the vineyard for up to two weeks. During this time the grape loses about 40% of its volume due to evaporation of water which causes concentration of sugars.The Palomino must destined for Matusalem comes from the first press of the continuous presses so as to obtain slightly more structure and body. Following fermentation to between 11% and 12% alcohol the wine is fortified to 18% alcohol and then enters the Oloroso Solera. An empty space of 100 liters is left in the casks so that the wine has a large surface area in contact with the oxygen and therefore undergoes complete oxidation. The Pedro Ximénez grapes undergo a strong press similar to olive oil production. The must then begin to ferment although stops at around 7% alcohol due to sugar stress. At this time the wine is fortified to 15% alcohol and then enters into the Pedro Ximénez Solera. After ageing separately for more or less 15 years the two grape varieties are blended, 75% Palomino and 25% Pedro Ximénez. The blend then enters into the Matusalem Solera where it will spend a further 15 years. All the process is supervised by our winemaker and master blend
Matusalem after 30 years in cask has acquired an intense mahogany colour with profound aromas of dried fruits, raisins, spices and mature wood, as well as leather and cocoa. On the palate smooth and sweet, long and velvety. Matusalem has an interesting bittersweet finish due to its mix of the sweet Pedro Ximénez and bitter tannins from the oak.