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Sherry is a fortified wine produced in the Jerez region of southwest Spain, mainly from the white Palomino Fino variety grown on the famous chalky white albariza soils. There are two distinct styles of Sherry made from the Palomino wine: Fino and Oloroso. Sherry is matured in the ‘solera’ - a system of layers (‘criaderas’) of wooden barrels (‘butts’) - where it becomes more complex and mellow with time. Valdivia’s Sacromonte sherries spend at least 15 years in total in the solera, giving them a unique depth and richness.
Fino: Pale, delicate wine made from the best free-run juice - the best Finos are sourced from older vines on the best albariza soils of Jerez Superior. Fino is fortified to 15% alcohol and matured under a layer of naturally-occurring yeast (the ‘flor’), to give freshness and a savoury, tangy character. There are three different types of Fino.
Fino: Bone dry, clean, elegant and fine, best when consumed fresh after opening
Manzanilla: Extra refreshing style, matured in the humid, cool conditions of the coastal town of Sanlúcar de Barrameda
Amontillado: Aged Fino, more amber in colour and richer/nuttier in taste, occurs when the flor covering is lost and the Fino is exposed to oxygen
Oloroso: Darker and stronger than Fino, the Oloroso wine is made from the fuller-bodied press juice.
It is fortified to 18% alcohol, which stops the growth of Flor, and results in oxidative ageing. The resulting Oloroso sherry is dark brown, dry, full and nutty in character.