How is Sherry Made? A Look into the Origins and Process

Sherry is a delicious wine that is enjoyed by people all over the world, but how is Sherry made?

In this blog post, we’ll discuss how sherry is made and what goes into making this delicious drink.

We’ll also provide some tips for how to enjoy sherry to the fullest.

What is Sherry?

Sherry is a type of fortified wine that originates from the Andalusia region of Spain.

It is made by blending wine with brandy and aging it in oak barrels.

Sherry comes in various styles, from dry to sweet, and can be enjoyed on its own or as an accompaniment to food.

The distinctive flavor of sherry comes from the unique way it is produced. 

Check out this video to see why you need to have an idea of what type of sherry you want to try before you head to the bar or liquor store to try some.

How Sherry is Made

Sherry Made
There are 6 types of sherry ranging from very dry to cream which is syrupy sweet.

The first step in making sherry is to ferment the wine using natural yeasts native to the Andalusia region. This gives sherry its characteristic nutty flavor.

Next, the wine is blended with brandy and aged in oak barrels for 3 to 30 years.

The sherry develops a complex flavor profile that includes notes of dried fruits, spices, and nuts during this time.

This fortification makes it a good substitute for port wine, though the flavors are quite different.

Sherry can have a bright citrusy flavor or a deep earthy flavor like mushrooms and nuts depending on the label.

Finally, the sherry is bottled and ready to be enjoyed.

Read our related article on Port vs Sherry for a complete comparison and guide to these two wines.

Types of Sherry

sherry wines
There are thousands of labels of sherry to try that range from white to ruby red.


Fino is a type of sherry that is light and dry, with a nutty flavor. It is made from white grapes and is typically aged five years or more.

Fino sherry is the most popular type of sherry in Spain and is often served as an apéritif.

It pairs well with light snacks such as nuts or olives, and can also be used in cooking.

For example, fino sherry is often used to deglaze pan-fried dishes such as chicken or fish.

Fino sherry is also a key ingredient in the classic Spanish dish, paella.

Known as “the original Windex,” fino sherry makes an excellent cleaner for glass and mirrors.

When diluted with water, it can be used to remove fingerprints or smudges from glass surfaces.

We prefer to save ours for drinking.

Pedro Ximenez

Pedro Ximenez is a sherry-style wine that is produced in the sherry region of Spain.

This rich and complex wine is typically made using the sherry grape varietal, giving its deep amber color and notes of dried fruit, caramel, and molasses.

Though sherry wines have historically been consumed as an accompaniment to food, they are now often enjoyed as an after-dinner drink.

Pedro Ximenez wines offer a luxurious drinking experience that highlights the Spanish origins, whether sipped on their own or paired with a chocolate dessert or cookie plate.

So if you’re looking for something unusual and unique to try, don’t pass up the chance to sip some delicious Pedro Ximenez.


Oloroso is a type of sherry that gets its unique flavor from the unique aging process it undergoes.

Unlike other sherry varieties, oloroso sherry is not aged under a blanket of protective flor yeast, so it spends much more time aging in contact with air, being oxidized.

During this extended oxidation, the sherry develops darker colors and strong flavors like vanilla, tobacco, and chocolate.

Because of its intense flavor profile, oloroso sherry is often enjoyed as a digestive after a meal or alongside rich desserts.

Whether sipped on its own or used to add complexity to cocktails, oloroso is truly one of the most distinctive sherry varieties on the market today.


Manzanilla sherry is a distinctive and tasty wine that has been carefully aged to achieve its rich flavor and fragrant aroma.

Made from white grapes that are seasoned with the essential oils found in manzanilla olives, this sherry is produced exclusively in the town of Sanlucar de Barrameda, Spain.

Due to this region’s unique conditions and climate, sherry made from manzanilla grapes boasts a bold flavor that combines citrus notes with hints of nutmeg and oak.

Whether enjoyed on its own or paired with a variety of dishes, manzanilla sherry is truly a treat for the senses.

So if you’re looking for something special to sip on this summer, be sure to give manzanilla sherry a try.

Read our related article on Sherry vs Brandy for a complete look at the origins, flavor profiles, uses, and more of these beverages!

How to drink sherry 

Types Of Sherry
Sherry is traditionally served in tiny 1.5oz sipping glasses. The drink is meant to be savored slowly and in moderation.

Sherry is best enjoyed at room temperature in a small glass.

This allows you to enjoy the flavor and aroma of the wine fully. Sherry can be enjoyed on its own or paired with food.

Try pairing it with cheesecake, strong cheese, nuts, or dried fruits if you enjoy sherry with food.

These flavors will complement the wine and help you to enjoy its unique flavor profile fully.

So whatever your preference, be sure to give sherry a try the next time you’re looking for a delicious and complex wine to enjoy.

Read our related article on How to Drink Sherry for a more detailed guide to serving, pairing, and storing Sherry!

Tips for Buying and Serving Sherry

serving sherry
Sherry is often used in favorite cocktails, but many people don’t realize it’s delicious on its own.
  • When buying sherry, look for a wine that has been aged for at least 3 years. This will ensure that the wine has developed its full flavor potential.
  • When serving sherry, it is best to pour it into small glasses so that you can fully enjoy its aroma and flavor.
  • To get the most out of your sherry, be sure to serve it at room temperature. This will allow you to enjoy its flavor and aroma fully.
  • Choose a drier sherry as an apertif or mixer, and a cream sherry for sipping and desserts.
  • Sherry tastes better the longer it ages, with the golden number being about 7 years in our opinion.

Many people think that all sherry is syrupy-sweet, but this simply isn’t true.

There is a sherry for every palate from dry to sugary. This is one reason that sherry is storming the wine world with a comeback.

Not sure if your Sherry has gone bad? Read our related article, Does Sherry Go Bad? for shelflife information and tips on serving after opening.

Wrap Up

Sherry is a fortified wine that can mean different flavors to different people depending on the brands they’ve enjoyed.

We suggest that you look for a sherry tasting event in your area to discover the many flavors of sherry and pick your own favorites!

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