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Which are the best Sherry bodega tours to visit?

It is hard to choose the best Sherry bodega tours from all the bodegas (cellars), as there are so many. However as locals living in Cadiz province and as a wine certified (WSET Level 2) we will give our own opinion from among the many cellars that we have visited.

First of all, Sherry is a Spanish traditional fortified wine aged in a solera system. It is famous worldwide, thanks to the Dukes of Medina Sidonia. They attracted English merchants and encouraged foreign trade since the 15th Century.

Sherry is one of the most versatile wines in the worlds. These wines range from extremely dry (the majority of the Sherry produced) to one of the sweetest wines in the world. The Sherry triangle is the only place in the world allowed to age Sherry. However the “Marco de Jerez” can produce Sherry, but not every part of it can age it. This area includes Rota, Chipiona, Trebujena, Lebrija, Chiclana de la Frontera, Jerez de la Frontera, Puerto de Santa Maria and Sanlucar de Barrameda. If you want to learn more about: how to produce Sherry; biological and oxidative ageing; the solera system; and the “flor” (the yeast layer that grows on top of some Sherries), please click here.

The Sherry Triangle

The bodegas (cellars) in the Sherry triangle are the only places allowed by the D.O. committee where sherry can be aged.  These cellars are special warehouses and are locally called cathedrals. These are buildings of significant height and numerous arcs which allow for a better exposure of the wines to the influence of the special climate of the Region.

The Sherry triangle is formed by: Jerez de la Frontera, where the origin of the name Jerez/Sherry comes from, Sanlúcar de Barrameda and El Puerto de Santa María. We always like to make names in Spain short and easy to read…not.

Below we will give our opinion of the 5 best Sherry bodegas tours to visit between the three cities that are allowed to age Sherry. The Sherry bodega options that we are giving you are those authentic tours that will provide you with a unique experience/ tour, away from the big crowds:

1) El Puerto de Santa María

Near the coast the temperatures are moderate and the humidity is a little higher. This helps some Sherries to have some salty notes in them. The best Sherry bodega tour that we recommend here is:

Gutiérrez-Colosía

It is located in the mouth of the river Guadalete. The dry “Levante” and the humid “Poniente” winds regulate the surrounding moisture level thus maintaining optimum conditions for our wines to age. The Gutierrez Colosia bodegas are heirs to a long viticulture and wine producing tradition. Their first bodega, built in 1838 , looks almost as such to this day. Mr. José Gutiérrez Dosal acquired it towards the beginning of the 20th century. He is the late great grandfather of this last generation of the Gutierrez Colosia family.

A tour company runs the tours out of this bodega. The tour guides are very informed and the sherry tasting at the end is outstanding for the low price that it has. You will try 6 different types of Sherry and a brandy.

Information of the tours

Price of the tour: €10 adults/ €4 children

Length of the tour: 1:30h

Monday-Friday (except for bank holidays): 11:15 h.(English) & 12:30 h. (español)

Saturdays (except for bank holidays): 11:30 (English) & 13:00 h. (español)

Visitas en francés / Français – Con reserva previa / SurRéservation préalable

2) Sanlúcar de Barrameda

Sanlúcar is near the coast, Guadalquivir river, and the wetlands of the National Park of Doñana. All this creates a Sherry venencia Hidalgo cellarmicroclimate moderating the temperatures and highly increasing the humidit. When the poniente blows (wind from the Atlantic) the salty air will also give part of its characteristic to this famous Sherry aged just here, the Manzanilla: Manzanilla Designation of Origin (D.O.) only allows Manzanilla Sherry to be made in Sanlúcar de Barrameda.

Bodegas Hidalgo La Gitana

Bodegas Hidalgo La Gitana opened its doors in 1792 and since then it passes from parents to children. Making it today, one of the few companies managed and directed by the family, is the eighth generation of the founder.

We recommend doing the VORS Sherry tour, even if the price is a little higher. Here you will be tasting 6 wines in total, 3 VORS (Very Old Rare Sherry), and different manzanillas. The guide will pour you sherry straight from the casks to your glass, even the VORS. They use a traditional method called Venencia to pour it. In this tour you will even taste a gem a ~60 years old Palo Cortado Sherry.

Information of the tours (there are more tours, but we will focus on Sherry tastings)

Basic tour:

Price of the tour: €12 adults

Length of the tour: 1:15h

Monday-Saturdays (except for bank holidays): 11.30h (English) – 13.00h (Español)

VORS tour:

Price of the tour: €30 adults

Length of the tour: 2:00h

Monday- Saturdays: 12:00 h (Call in advance)

Bodegas Alonso

The Asencio brothers’ main purpose and passion was to continue and improve the work of three important wine cellars in Sanlúcar de Barrameda: Pedro Romero, Gaspar Florido and Fernando Méndez. For that purpose, Bodegas ALONSO bought Pedro Romero’s wine cellar (from 1860) and its Sherry soleras.

These sherry soleras already had a worldwide prestige. If you have the money to afford it you can do a tour with one of the owners and try Sherry (VORS from ~40-120 years old).

Information of the tours

Basic tour:

Price of the tour: €20 adults

Monday-Saturdays (except for bank holidays): Call in advance to book

Standard tour (VORS ~40YEARS):

Price of the tour: €40 adults

Monday-Saturdays (except for bank holidays): Call in advance to book

Exclusive tour (VORS from ~40-120 years old):

Price of the tour: €300 adults

Monday-Saturdays (except for bank holidays): Call in advance to book

3) Jerez de la Frontera

As Jerez de la Frontera is further away from the sea, the temperature range is bigger, becoming cold in winter and very hot in winter. It is also drier than the other two cities from the Sherry triangle. All this makes the “flor” to be more thin and therefore sometimes the Fino suffers a little of oxidation. The best Sherry bodega tours here for us are:

Bodegas Rey Fernando de Castilla

An unknown cellar from 1830 owned by a Danish since 1972. This makes the tour experience more exciting there tends to be smaller groups for a good price. The guide is knowledgable in Sherry, the wines are wonderful, and the price for the quality is great. If you also love brandy this is a place where you can have a wonderful time.

Information of the tours

Price of the tour: €15 adults

Monday-Fridays: 10:00h-14:00 (Call in advance)

Bodegas Tradición

Here you can enjoy a private tour. The cellar is young, but not their wines. They bought very old remarkable soleras and the family of the owners were Sherry shippers since the 17th century. This place is also for those people who love art. It has one of the best private collections of painting in Andalusia. It has paintings of Spanish painters from the 14th to the 19th centuries. Their art museum includes artists such as Goya, Zurbarán, Velázquez, Murillo or El Greco, among others. Even if the price is a little higher, the private ambience, the VORS and VOS wine tasting, and the art display is worth the money.

Information of the tours

Price of the tour: €30 adult

Monday-Friday: 9:00h-17:00h. In July and August 9:00h-15:00h

Touring

If you are looking for food, traditional and Sherry experiences keep reading.

Sherry tours

Are you visiting Cadiz and you would you like to learn more about Sherry and immerse yourself in the local culture and traditions? If you want to learn and experience it with the company of a local guide and turn your visit to Cadiz into an exciting gastronomic adventure, book with us. Sherry love is very contagious, surely you will also become one!

If you have your own transport we can accompany you while learning about Sherry. Enjoy the best Sherry bodega tours, local culture and traditions and the local gastronomy. In case you do not have a transport we can arrange transport, restaurant and the rest of your trip for you.

If you would like to learn all about Jerez-Sherry-Xeres D.O. then join us for our Ultimate Sherry Tasting tour. We can design a private tour just for you and your family.

If you are staying in Vejer de la Frontera or within Cadiz province we can organize a private Sherry tasting with gourmet local tapas for your group. We will go to your place and do a Sherry or Andalusian wine tasting for you privately. We can focus on premium Sherries; VORS and premium Sherries; or Andalusian wines in case you do not like Sherry.

If you are thinking to travel to other parts of Cadiz, we are based in Vejer de la Frontera. Officially, Vejer is one of the most beautiful villages of Spain, you should come and meet us!

Food and cultural tours

If you want to learn more about Vejer de la Frontera, its traditions and gastronomy book our Sherry&Tapas tour! Learn about sherry, wine tastings, and how to pair it with gourmet traditional food from the area. Taste different types of Sherry and local food like bluefin tuna, bull meat, salmorejo, eggplant with honey and pinenuts, etc. The tour includes 5 tapas and 5 wine/Sherries .

We also have a tour that focuses on Bluefin tuna. You will learn the history of Bluefin tuna in the area since Phoenician times by going in a private boat ride to visit the almadraba; visit a local food market; and taste different parts of bluefin tuna in all ways, salt-dried, grilled, raw.

If you would like to visit other beautiful white villages like Vejer, we can do a tour of the white villages in Cadiz province. On the other hand we can mix a visit to a beautiful white village wit a visit to an olive oil mill. Or you can choose to do a private tour that we can design especially for you and recommend places to visit based on your interests. Come and join Explore la Tierra in Vejer de la Frontera, Cadiz, Spain!

Our last addition is our become an artisan for one day tour. Make your own cheese and your own leather souvenir in Ubrique and enjoy its great history and panoramic views. This white village is famous worldwide for its importance for the leather international companies.

Contact us

To learn more about sherry, culture and travel guides, please hit the big blue button to read other blog posts. If you have any ideas and suggestions, please do not hesitate to write us an email at info@explorelatierra.com. Please read our privacy policy before you get in touch with us. We will take your new recommendations into consideration.

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