Yzaguirre vermouths (pronounced eez-ah-gear-ray) are produced in the Catalonia region of Spain (where Barcelona is the largest city) according to an old secret recipe from the 1800s (aren’t they all…). A popular way of enjoying these vermouths is just over ice, with an olive or a lemon twist. The Reserva line uses a Spanish white wine base combined with an aged aromatic maceration of 50-90 different botanicals, and is further aged for a year in oak barrels. These are a solid choice for use in cocktails, or even on its own. I can’t wait to find some cool vermouth bars in Barcelona….
For some basics, vermouth is an aromatized and fortified wine. The concept and production of aromatized/fortified wines in general actually dates back hundreds to thousands of years across multiple cultures. With wine being one of the earliest alcoholic beverages in existence, aromatization (adding aromas/flavors with botanicals/spices/sugar) was done for medicinal purposes as well as to ‘cover up’ souring wine. Fortifying it by adding a stronger distilled spirit helped further with preservation. With the higher sugar content and addition of a stronger spirit, vermouths will last you longer than normal wine once open, though should still be kept in the fridge and tightly sealed.
BTW, if anyone has any Barcelona travel recs, send em my way!