Viños MAR 7 is found in the heart of Sanlúcar de Barrameda and is run by María José Romero, who recalls her most memorable sherry moments as having been over a glass of Manzanilla with her father, “a pharmacist by profession but a winemaker by devotion”.
Her biodynamically farmed vineyard dates from 1820 and is in an enviable position with exceptional microclimatic conditions. María created MAR 7 in honour of her winemaking ancestors. These fortified wines are aged in 80-year-old American oak barrels and see no additions during production.
Manzanilla is a style of sherry that ages in barrel under 'flor', a protective cap of yeast. It is effectively a form of dry Fino sherry, the lightest style, but can only be made in the coastal town of Sanlúcar de Barrameda. The microclimate creates a very specific type of flor, which contributes to a manzanilla's distinctive, vibrant and super-salty flavour. Then a 'Pasada' style such as this means the wine has been aged for a longer period of time and some oxidation has taken place, creating a nuttier, more structured wine.
María's Manzanilla Pasada is like all her other sherries aged in old American oak barrels and for that extended period of time, which makes for an intensely aromatic wine. Camomile tea, the comforting aroma of a bakery, fresh almonds, then an undercurrent of roasted nuts, layer upon layer of flavour on a long, delicious finish.