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Sherry tasting in Jerez

  • Jerez de la Frontera, Andalusia, Spain

  • Bucket List Experience

Last updated: 13 March, 2024

Jerez de la Frontera is synonymous with sherry (the very word is an Anglicization of Xeres or Jerez), and according to DOP regulations it can only be made in the ‘Sherry triangle’ – Jerez, Sanlucar de Barrameda and El Puerto de Santa Maria.

Made with white Palomino grapes, the wine is then fortified to various degrees, from pale dry Fino and Manzanilla to Oloroso and the very sweet, very alcoholic (up to 22%) Pedro Ximenez.

Many of the bodegas (wine cellars) have a British connection, a love affair that began in 1587 when Sir Francis Drake brought back 2,900 barrels of sherry after destroying the Spanish navy in Cadiz. The tours, some including serious tastings, food and even art, are fascinating; the grandest bodegas are breath-taking wine cathedrals.

While you’re there

After a bodega tour, linger in Jerez to sip more sherry-like a local in its traditional, often quirky tabancos – wine shops combined with tapas bars.

Who to go with: tour operators

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Bodega Barbadillo

  • Cadiz, Andalusia, Spain

Looking through an arch down a row of columns

Experience

Sanlucar de Barrameda is renowned for its Manzanillas, and Barbadillo, founded in 1821, makes one of the best; visits to their cathedral-like bodega includes a Manzanilla Museum. They also do optional self-guided visits and tastings.

Min age 18

Good for age: 18+

Bodegas Tradicion

  • Jerez del Fontera, Andalusia, Spain

Close up of oak barrels containing sherry

Experience

One of the oldest bodegas, from 1650, and supplier to the British Royal family in the 18th-century, where the tour includes one of Andalusia’s top private art galleries, with works by Goya, Velazquez, El Greco and Zurbaran.

Min age 18

Good for age: 18+

Diez Merito

  • Jerez de la Frontera, Andalusia, Spain

Sherry wine in oak barrels

Experience

In the centre of Jerez, a bodega in beautiful vaults dating back to 1760; they also do sherry cooking and vineyard tours, and special tastings of VORS (Very Old Rare Sherry).

Adult price: £10

Min age 18

Good for age: 18+

Gonzalez Byass

  • Jerez de la Frontera, Andalusia, Spain

Casks stacked in rows with a central pathway through the middle

Experience

Founded in 1835, the makers of Tio Pepe (named after the founder’s beloved uncle) offer tours with optional tapas tastings of their stunning bodega in central Jerez, their vast cellars partly designed by Gustave Eiffel.

Adult price: £13

Min age 18

Good for age: 18+

Jose Estevez

  • Jerez de la Frontera, Andalusia, Spain

Sherry barrels stacked up in rows

Experience

A variety of bodega and vineyard tours, plus beautiful horses in the Real Tesoro stud, tack and carriage museums to admire and art by Picasso, Miro, Botero and Dali.

Min age 18

Good for age: 18+

Paladar y Tomar

  • Jerez de la Frontera, Andalusia, Spain

Wooden barrels of sherry being stored

Experience

Half-day high end private tours of two completely different bodegas, with tastings and a gourmet lunch with wine pairings, but endlessly adaptable to suit your requirements.

Adult price: £30

Min age 18

Good for age: 18+

Duration: Half day

Sandeman

  • Jerez de la Frontera, Andalusia, Spain

Exterior of Bodega Sandeman building

Experience

Specialists in both sherry and port, founded by Scotsman George Sandeman in 1790 and close to the Royal School of Equestrian Art, so an easy bodega to visit if you’re in Jerez for the horses.

Adult price: £8

Min age 18

Good for age: 18+

Bodega Osborne

  • Puerto de Santa Maria, Andalusia, Spain

Exterior of Osborne Bodega, a white low rise building with a bull statue in the foreground, El Puerto de Santa Maria

Experience

In Puerto de Santa Maria, book morning tours in English and learn about the sherry and their famous hilltop Osborne black bull silhouettes, so striking they’ve become a symbol of Spain itself.

Min age 18

Good for age: 18+

Logistics

Price: Free
Minimum age: 18
Age suitable: 18+
When: All year around

Getting there & doing it

With its many downtown bodegas, Jerez  is perhaps the only wine region you can visit without a car – but’s also a beautiful area to explore behind the wheel. Get inspired by downloading the free Big Book of Sherry Wines and check out the sherry wine road website crammed with useful practical information on visiting the bodegas outside of Jerez, along with restaurants, museums, and a remarkable range of experiences you can book along the way. If you don’t want to drive, Toma and Coe offer 4-day tours of the Sherry Triangle.

When to do it

The bodegas are open all year roundseven days a week, although April and May are ideal, when it’s not too hot, the vines are in full leaf and you can often combine a visit with a fiesta. Late summer, when temperatures have dipped and the vines are laden with grapes is beautiful too; the vineyards will be busy but visitors are welcome, and you can combine a visit to the beach.

Who to go with: organised tours

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Our selection of the best Viator tours of this attraction or activity

  • Cádiz

Guided tour to a winery and relaxed Sherry and Brandy tasting straight from the barrel. Introduction to the ancient relationship of the Jerezanos to the wine while walking through the historic center to the bodega (about 15 minutes), visiting places that tell us something about that history. At the winery, we learn first hand everything about the production of Sherry and Brandy. Of course, we also take time to taste these fine wines and spirits, most of them directly in the wine cellar. This tour is designed only for small groups – I prefer a familiar atmosphere.

Price €54

Min age 18

Rating 5 / 5 [13 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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  • Cádiz

Carlos is an expert and passionate about local cuisine and wine, as evidenced by his Wine Certification, WSET (Level 2). He will explain and inform about the production and types of sherry wine, how to make a professional tasting, dishes and local cuisine, as well as show how to pair a sherry wine ... You can also hear about local traditions and anecdotes, while the group stops at interesting places and corners of the town, making a stop among tapas bars.

Price €71

Min age 10

Rating 5 / 5 [10 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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Website >