The “Pago de los Tercios” is a strip of albarizas between Puerto de Santa María and Jerez de la Frontera, delimited by the road that connects Jerez with Sanlúcar. "Balbaína" and "Los Tercios" occupy the heart of the imaginary triangle that many scholars refer to, putting the three municipalities of the D.O. as its vertices. Jerez-Xeres-Sherry. "Los Tercios" is also a historical payment of Pedro Ximénez. He commands in those lands, a thick, feudal and hearty figure. An old vintner who owns one of the largest vineyards in the area: “La Blanquita”. This octogenarian - young at heart - treasures an extraordinary wine culture. But when he talks about "life itself," he stuns the most learned of sociologists. His name is Francisco Barba, but we all know him as “Curro el de la Blanquita”.
Many friends come to Curro to learn, share our experiences in the field, or simply to test their He came and participated in his gatherings of painters, writers, vine growers and even politicians, who appear there without warning, with the only condition of drinking until the count of the drinks drunk and always invited.
This vintage I needed your advice regarding an intense“ night dew ”that in Jerez we call“ softness ”and that -de facto-, is equivalent to a vaporous and soft rain on the ground. The harvest has been particularly unproductive, and I was worried about possible rotting of the grapes due to excess humidity.
Curro summoned me at five thirty in the morning in his vineyard -At that time with his 81 years he begins to work every day-. It was still dark when I arrived, he invited me to a glass of brandy and took me by the arm saying: “Take it easy José Antonio, the secret of the softness is that thanks to them the skin does not lose acidity. This is how the wine is balanced, especially if it is sweet ... Don't worry. Now drink another glass of brandy, because tomorrow the sun rises and the grapes will dry up. Although this year there are softer than ever, the Sun will help you… ”. And I was convinced, to continue with my harvest ...
In the end, as Curro said, the sun came out ... We have been able to combine maturity with natural acidity. And although we all know that the life of a wine depends on its acidity, very few know that in Jerez, that acidity before depends on “the softness”.