Jerez – Dancing Horses & Sherry

Jerez – Dancing Horses & Sherry

Some of us were recently introduced to the world of dressage during the Tokyo Olympics, where an American horse pranced and danced to the hip hop tunes we grew up with. Real Escuela Andaluza Del Arte Ecuestre in Jerez is one of the big four equestrian schools in Europe that teaches classical dressage. Since Jerez is only an hour train ride away, we decided to go check out a performance (only available on Tuesdays and Thursdays).

The main building reminded me of one of the many chateaux we had run past in the Médoc marathon back in 2012.
Entrance to the exhibition
Most performing horses are male, and are at least 3 years old. Mixing of the sexes apparently complicates training.
Unlike yesterday’s tour of the bullring, the school showcased a healthier relationship between man and animal. Horses with their braided manes and beautiful iridescent coats indicate that they are very well taken care of. But one must wonder if the horses would still rather live their own lives in their natural habitat.
Several horses prance through a well choreographed routine in sync with more classical music (no hip hop here).

The hour and a half show (with a 10-minute intermission) went by quickly enough, and we still had time to swing by a winery for some sherry tasting before catching our 3pm train back to Sevilla.

Sandeman is conveniently located right next to the equestrian school. Sherry is apparently big in the UK. In the US, not so much.
The four different sherries we tasted, starting from right to left: dry fino, medium dry, medium sweet, and natural sweet. Both mediums were blends.
Wine colors in the reverse order. Our favorite out of the four was the medium sweet sherry which tasted somewhat similar to port (Sandeman also has a winery in Porto, Portugal). However, we both prefer port over sherry based on this one tasting.

The walk back to the train station was about 25 minutes, and it was a miracle we made it in time after four glasses of 17% alcohol on an empty stomach. An hour nap on the train was just what we needed. Back in Sevilla, we picked up some empanadas, and we’re ready to move on to the next leg of our trip – Córdoba.


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