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Manzanilla Manzanilla Viva La Pepa - Sanchez Romate

Published on May 8th, 2024 | by Ruben


Viva La Pepa Manzanilla (Sánchez Romate)

A very young Manzanilla with a beautiful retro label

La Pepa was the familiar name given to the Spanish Constitution, signed in Cádiz in 1812. Of course it is also the widespread abbreviation of Josefa. On the label of this Manzanilla we see a flamenco woman, believed to be Carmen Borbolla. One of many flamenco on the labels of sherry wines. It is part of a series that includes rarities like the Fino Perdido, Amontillado Olvidado or the Oloroso Encontrado.

This wine seems to exist with different labels. I’m not mistaken the label of the 2023 bottle we’re having today was originally used for the Manzanilla Leonora from Bodegas A. R. Ruiz y Hermanos. This bodega was acquired by Rumasa in 1963 and then by José Estévez about ten years later.

Viva La Pepa is a young Manzanilla from Bodegas Sánchez Romate. I’ve heard that it is sourced from the small almacenista Cuevas Jurado who is also supplying Lustau for instance. Most bodegas in Jerez are selling little or no Manzanilla but they insist on offering a complete range of wines.

The wine is surpsisingly pale in colour, almost clear. Romate gives little information, but it should be around 3 years of age.


Bodegas Sanchez Romate


Manzanilla Viva La Pepa (15%, Sánchez Romate, L23236)

Nose: the pale colour already indicated a delicate profile. Not very expressive, but nice aromas of green olives, iodine and dried wildflowers. Light hints of green apple in the background. Salted almonds. Heavy chilling seems to lock up the nose, but as it warms up more aromas come out,. Bread dough, dried seaweed and hints of sea spray.

Mouth: fresh, with above-average acidity and brief apple flavours. Then saltier notes over time, as well as floral notes, almonds and lightly bitter herbs. It is slightly sharp and thin, but there’s no astringency as such. Delicate bitterness and aniseed in the finish.

Availability: quite good since Romate has a focus on export markets. Typically between € 9 and € 12. Check Coalla Gourmet or Gourmet Hunters for instance.

Summary: Viva La Pepa is a light and charming, if slightly atypical Manzanilla. The youth makes it fresh and slightly fruity, but on the other hand there is also a racy edge to it. Personally we're always steering towards older Manzanilla but this makes a pleasant food wine, no doubt.



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About the Author

is a Certified Sherry Educator who fell in love with sherry some 25 years ago, but switched to a higher gear in 2013 and started writing about it. Lived in Madrid for a couple of years, now back in Belgium. I also run a whisky blog over at

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