This Spanish Wine Was Maya Angelou's Go-To Drink

Poet and author Maya Angelou didn't enter the profession for which she became most well-known until her 40s, yet she didn't let this late entry stop her. Angelou went on to write six poetry books and six autobiographical volumes, even reading some of her words for a presidential inauguration while cementing herself as a force to be reckoned with in the literary world. Like many creatives, she was somewhat militant about the environment in which she created and worked. 

The writer preferred the quiet ambiance of plainly decorated and bare hotel rooms where she wouldn't be bothered. She started her days early, around 5 a.m., and kept both a Bible and a bottle of sherry with her. During an interview with The Paris Review in 1990, Angelou admitted that as early as 6:15 in the morning she would enjoy a nip to kickstart her writing projects. A glass of sherry certainly makes for one saucy way to overcome writer's block.

A glass with a side of creative inspiration

In a conversation with The Paris Review, Maya Angelou was asked if the sherry was to unwind after a day's work or to simply get the creative embers burning. "I might have it at 6:15 a.m. just as soon as I get in, but usually it's about 11 o'clock when I'll have a glass of sherry," she told the reporter. According to a 2004 study published in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, sherry also packs antioxidants that can lower cholesterol, so Angelou was certainly onto something.

The tastes of sherry can vary, however, and with a variety of styles to sample, you may feel inspired to write your own work of art as you contemplate the tasting notes the fortified Spanish wine can offer. From bottles of fruit-forward libations to punchier blends of tipples, the world of sherry provides a vast expanse to explore. Like Angelou, you may benefit from having a thesaurus and notepads nearby to help you pinpoint and describe some of the flavors you experience while sipping your boozy beverage.