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Valdespino is a tiny, high-quality vineyard that exists within a larger wine and spirits company called Grupo Estevez. The winery uses the resources of the company to make some of the finest, most distinctive and expertly produced Sherries available. The historic bodega dates back to 1264 when Don Alfonso Valdespino, one of the 24 knights that expelled the Moors from Jerez, was rewarded for his duties with a gift of land from the king. The Macharnudo Alto vineyard has pure albariza soil, and no chemicals are used on the vara y pulgar trained vines. All of their wines are barrel-fermented in neutral oak and are allowed to decide their destiny naturally (biological vs. oxidative aging), where other houses ferment in stainless steel and inoculate the flor to produce wines of a particular style. Valdespino’s ‘Tio Diego’ amontillado ages for eight years under flor before spending another eight years aging in direct contact with oxygen. Nutty and buttery on the nose, with a pinch of sea salt, this very dry sherry draws in the tang of lemon zest as well as dried fruit flavors on the palate.