A Day in Jerez
On Thursday we traveled to Jerez—a 90 minute drive from Estepona on a gorgeous sunny day. We arrived in Jerez without a problem. Ray’s navigational skills amaze me, as there are so many roundabouts entering the city, it’s nearly impossible to stay on course. We did have some trouble leaving at the end of the day, but that might have had something to do with the tastings and the reluctance to leave. We passed through town to arrive in time for the incredible horse show at the Real Escuela del Arte Ecuestre, (Royal School of Equestrian Arts). Jerez has been a center for horsemanship in Spain for centuries, and this beautiful campus demonstrated the tradition and pride of this very special academy. Sadly, photos were not allowed so I cannot post pictures of these magnificent horses, riders, and handlers. But it was really something special. I took a few shots of the arena during the intermission, just to give an idea of the place, and an outside photo or two. The only photos of horses I can provide are those of the Przewalski breed stabled on the grounds. This is the last wild breed, a key evolutionary link to horse breeding that has continued to survive for 12,000 years. The photo of the male may offer some insight into how they managed to – ahem – preserve the species under the most difficult conditions.
Of course, we scheduled our time in Jerez to coincide with the harvest festival. The sherry bodegas (cellars) were open for tasting, and we managed to do a fair amount of research, aspiring wine scholars that we are. At the terrific tour and sherry tasting at the Sandeman bodega in Jerez, they threw in a little flamenco show just for fun. (Video attached to previous post). Our guide, Patricia, pulled of the “Sandeman Don” costume as her cape fluttered in the breeze while walking us through the cellars, patios, and demonstrations of the sherry-making process. When you click through the Jerez slide show, you’ll see how her fabulous mane of red hair set off the ensemble. Ray loved her, and especially enjoyed her adorable Andalucían accent, thick enough to spread on toast.
Click on an image to view the slideshow.