The restaurant Casa Marcial will represent Spain in the international final of the VII Copa Jerez.
Casa Marcial, of Arriondas (Asturias) has been chosen by the judges of the National Final to represent Spain in the seventh edition of the gastronomic competition to find the best harmonies between food and Sherry. The International Final will be celebrated in 2017 with seven other countries competing: Germany, Belgium, Denmark, United States, Holland, United Kingdom and Russia. The harmonies offered by the Casa Marcial team of chef Matteo Pierazzoli and sommelier Juan Luis García were picked out as the most successful in a vibrant final held at the Hotel and Catering School of the Madrid Chamber of Commerce.
The Casa Marcial menu began with a starter of tortellini of pheasant and seaweed accompanied by an Amontillado Viejo Zuleta. The main dish, entitled “Wood pigeon…its parts”, was served as three dishes with three different harmonies: firstly a parfait of the liver and roasted head of the bird matched with Colosía Palo Cortado, followed by grilled breast accompanied by Sacristía AB Amontillado from the Antonio Barbadillo Selection, and ending with the bird’s stewed thighs with Hidalgo Oloroso Villapanés. To finish, the team presented a dessert of chocolate, mint and passion fruit accompanied by a Pedro Ximénez VORS from Bodegas Urium.
In an intense morning at the Hotel and Catering School of the Madrid Chamber of Commerce, the competition allowed the judges the opportunity to try twelve exciting gastronomic offerings straight from some of the most famous establishments in Spain, among them five Michelin Stars, which demonstrates the enormous potential of Sherry at the table. Casa Marcial, Atrio, El Cenador de Amós and La Curiosidad de Mauro Barreiro took great pleasure in championing their different approaches to gastronomy: haute cuisine, tradition, creativity… And all of them proved just how easily Sherry can be matched with top level gastronomy.
As to the judging, the National Final of the Copa Jerez saw the return of recognised experts in gastronomy and wine, with three National Prize winners on this occasion, including Beltrán Domecq, chemist, oenologist and president of the Consejo Regulador for Sherry and Manzanilla; Carlos Maribona, journalist with the newspaper ABC and author of the pioneering blog Salsa de Chiles; Alberto Luchini, journalist with the newspaper El Mundo and editor of the supplement La Luna de Metrópoli; and Custodio López Zamarra, sommelier of the restaurant Zalacaín for forty years and master of the Spanish court of sommeliers. The judges remarked on the very high level of the four teams and how difficult it was to pick just one winner.
Beltrán Domecq, president of the judges, declared
The National Final of the VII Copa Jerez has really stood out for the extremely high level of all the participants. All their dishes deserved to represent Spanish gastronomy against the other seven countries, which are deciding on their own candidates. For the Consejo Regulador it is certainly a real pleasure to see how top level gastronomy holds Sherry in such high esteem for their creations.
Casa Marcial: signature Asturian cuisine
Casa Marcial is considered to be the gastronomic emblem of Asturias. In a typical old house in the heart of the countryside the chef Nacho Manzano expresses his own interpretation of traditional Asturian cuisine served in the style of nouvelle cuisine, and always has plenty of room for Sherry. Seaweed with game, South American chocolate with local vinegar, old Amontillados and Olorosos packed with hazelnut and toasty aromas can be found here as easily as fish in water, and with the same vitality and richness, establishing strong connections between the flavours of Cantabria and the Atlantic.
Copa Jerez: the foremost international Sherry and gastronomy competition
After six successful editions over the course of over ten years, the Copa Jerez has established itself as one of the great events in the panorama of international gastronomy. Every two years the search for the perfect harmony of food and Sherry begins among some of the best restaurants in the world from a total of eight countries: Germany, Belgium, Denmark, United States, Holland, United Kingdom and Russia, and it is a prestigious gastronomic event which brings together over 500 outstanding professionals at each edition.
The international prestige of this competition is not only down to the extremely high level of the finalists and the harmonies they create, but also to the judges who evaluate them. Each edition counts on the expertise of some of the greatest names in the world of gastronomy such as Juan Mari Arzak, Josep Roca, Heston Blumenthal, Pontus Eloffson, Jancis Robinson, among many others.
The last VI edition of the Copa Jerez saw the triumph of the restaurant 15 Romolo of the United States thanks to their wonderfully sophisticated cuisine which perfectly matched their chosen Sherries, and this was recognised by the panel of judges composed of Pitu Roca, sommelier and co-proprietor of El Celler de Can Roca (3 Michelin Stars); Pedro Ballesteros Torres, Master of Wine and member of the Council of the Institute of Masters of Wine; Michael Weiss, Dean of the Department of Wine Studies at the Culinary Institute of America, New York; and Beltrán Domecq, president of the Consejo Regulador for Sherry Wines.