Legs of Jamon Serrano & Jamon Iberico

museo jam

Museo del  Jamón, Madrid

Spanish Table Seattle Newsletter                                                      December 14, 2011

Two Hours FREE PARKING at the Market through tomorrow, December 15, 2011, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.! To qualify, PARK in the Public Market Parking Garage at 1531 Western Avenue from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. SPEND at least $30 at Market businesses and VALIDATE  your parking ticket and receipts at the Market Information Booth at 1st & Pike prior to returning to your car, from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.The Spanish Table and Paris Grocery will have special hours for the holiday shopping season.  On Sunday, December 18, both stores are open from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM.   On Saturday, December 24th (Christmas Eve), both stores will be open from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

An unforgettable Madrid experience is a stop at the Museo del Jamón in the Puerta del Soljamon shopAkin to a pilgrimage stop for lovers of all things pork, the large shop is filled to the rafters with Embutidos (sausages) and legs of Jamón Serrano and Iberico. If only we could display our ham plenty here in such a mouthwatering fashion! But here, we can only hang plastic jamónes outside the refrigerator.But we do have authentic, bone-in legs of Jamón Serrano which weigh from 18 to 20 pounds and range from $340.00 to $370.00. We also have a bone-in leg of Jamón Iberico ($656.00; 18.76#) and one leg of Jamón Iberico Bellota ($954.00; 13.3#). corte-jamonWe carry

the leg stands (soporte jamonero – $19.95) so that you can carve slices off your very own leg of ham, whenever you wish. Think charcuterie plates or boccadillos for holidays!

We were challenged by our California partners recently to find the best use of MIguel y Valentino Pine Cone Smoked Extra Virgin Olive Oil ($13.99).  It’s naturally smoked, without any artificial flavorings and the oil itself is fruity and delicious.  We found that it enhanced pretty much anything we drizzled it on, and it makes an excellent gift!   Our favorite dishes to sprinkle it over:

–  Wild mushroom pizza, risotto or paella

–  Grilled Halibut or Salmon

–  Grilled pork chops

–  In an Apple and Cabrales blue cheese salad in place of bacon (it IS like invisible bacon after all!)

–  Pasta with a homemade piquillo pepper sauce

–  Grilled or sauteed shrimp   Easy party tapa!
–  Roasted fingerling potatoes Easy party tapa!

SPECIAL RIOJAS FOR THE HOLIDAYS Montecillo Gran Reserva Seleccion Especial – 4 bottle gift pack ($149.00)

There’s been a buzz here at the shop about Montecillo Gran Reserva Seleccion Especials, ever since we scooped the last of an amazing deal on 1981, 1982, 1985 and 1991 vintages. Professional duty demanded that we taste them all to make sure they lived up to their potential, and they absolutely do! These are exceptional classic Riojas, gracefully aged, each reflecting the individuality of the vintage. This is an excellent gift for lovers of traditional Riojas, or anyone who wants the rare opportunity to taste 4 old vintages! The 4 bottle wooden box contains one bottle of each wine:
1981 Montecillo Gran Reserva Selección Especial Rioja  Impressive liveliness in this 30 year old wine. Notes of balsamic, dried cherry and cigar box; elegant with silky tannins. “Complex aromas of plum, red berries, cinnamon, tree bark, pepper and bacon; autumnal in the style of a mature syrah yet still fresh. Less sweet in the middle than the 1982 but more penetrating, with lovely clarity of flavor. Finishes with firm, slightly drying tannins. For tasters unfamiliar with fully mature classic Riojas, this would be an excellent starting point.” 91 points Stephen Tanzer
1982 Montecillo Gran Reserva Selección Especial Rioja  From an excellent vintage, the 1982 exhibits nuance and impressive complexity. Vibrant and savory, with notes of smoke, mushroom, leather.  “The superb 1982 Gran Reserva Seleccion is from a great Rioja vintage. The wine was aged for nearly four years in French barriques and bottled in 1987. It exhibits a deep red-brick color and a sexy nose of earthy minerals, smoky tobacco, spice box, cherry, and red currants. This is followed by a nicely structured wine with elegance and a certain stateliness marking it as a classic example of old-style Rioja. This splendid effort should drink well for another decade.” 93 points Wine Advocate
1985 Montecillo Gran Reserva Selección Especial Rioja  Initally the 1985 seemed to be the lightest wine of the four, but it gradually opened up with air, and was even better the following day.    “Mature aromas of strawberry, meat, leather and truffle. Old-style, slightly funky Rioja flavors of pungent strawberry, leather and baking spices; lovely acidity gives the wine a juiciness and impressive inner-mouth lift. Reminded me a bit of an old Graves. Finishes juicy and long, with a slight dryness. A very idiosyncratic and satisfying example of a fully mature Rioja” 89 points Stephen Tanzer
1991 Montecillo Gran Reserva Selección Especial Rioja A more modern style, its expressive bright fruit has a beautiful taut balance. “The 1991 Gran Reserva Seleccion, from a difficult vintage, is nevertheless an outstanding effort. It spent 46 months in French barriques before being bottled in 1996. Dark ruby in color, the wine emits a lovely perfume of spice box, tobacco, and cherry. With considerable stuffing consisting of wood, mushrooms, currants and cherries, and a long finish, this deceptively powerful wine can be enjoyed for another 5-7 years.” 90 points Wine Advocate

OTHER FAVORITE RIOJAS 

2001 La Rioja Alta Viña Ardanza Reserva Especial Rioja ($36.00/750 ml;  $19.99/375 ml) La Rioja Alta is a benchmark for traditional Rioja wines, with its uncompromising quality and expressive wines. 2001 was a superb vintage and at La Rioja Alta, this wine was so distinctive that it earned the “Reserva Especial” designation which the winery has awarded to only 3 vintages in its history (1964, 1973 and 2001).     “Sexy, intensely perfumed bouquet of ripe raspberry and cherry with suggestions of potpourri, sandalwood and vanilla. Shows more power and darker fruits on the palate, picking up a touch of singed plum that adds a serious quality to the sweet black raspberry and cherry flavors without costing the wine any of its vibrancy. The long, sweet finish hangs on with very good tenacity.” 92 points Stephen Tanzer

2001 Muga Prado Enea Gran Reserva Rioja ($57.00) Winemaker Jorge Muga told us that the 2001 and 2005 vintages were the finest they’ve ever produced. After sharing a bottle of this wine with friends recently, we couldn’t agree more!   “A complex, heady bouquet of dried red berries, sandalwood, rose oil, black tea and licorice pastille. Smooth, focused and gently sweet cherry and raspberry flavors coat the palate, with gentle but integrated tannins providing shape. This silky, seamless wine finishes with a strong echo of candied flowers, spices and minerals.” 93 points Stephen Tanzer

2001 Marques de Murrieta Castillo Ygay Rioja Gran Reserva Especial ($60.) “Impressively complex bouquet of dried red fruits, tobacco, cedar and potpourri. A spicy, subtly sweet midweight, offering lively redcurrant and bitter cherry flavors and very soft tannins. The smoky finish features a strong echo of cedary spice.” 92 points Stephen Tanzer    

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Legs of Jamon Serrano & Jamon Iberico

  1. Don Connell

    Hi I am in Scotland.. we were in Madrid 4 weeks ago and visited the museo de jamon by accident . It was round the corner from our hotel. we have a jamonero and have bought hams in the past . By coincidence I wrote down
    the word potajamon as it was next to a plastic jamon and we wanted to buy a plastic one to save the jamonero from looking sad and empty.
    looked in the internet today ,saw your site and read about plastic hams. Yours is the only mention of them
    would you be so kind as to tell me the place you bought the plastic ones ?
    Cheers
    Donald Connell

    • Don: Those plastic hams were part of our display at Macy’s in San Francisco when we had a temporary outlet there a few years ago, during their flower show. Macy’s had the hams made for us and we’re not sure who actually manufactured them, but believe they cost over $100.00 each.
      I’m sorry I can’t be of more help!
      Thank you for contacting us and Best regards, Sharon Baden

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