Port Wine vs. Sherry

Port Wine
Sherry

Port wine and sherry are fortified wines used popularly consumed after dinner or as dessert wines. Port is made from grapes grown in the Douro region in Northern Portugal, while sherry is made from white grapes in a town in Spain.

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Port Wine

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Sherry

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Storage Port is generally stored in a cool dry place and horizontally if not yet open. Tawny ports or Colheitas may be consumed until up to 6 months of opening the bottle with no loss of flavor. Vintage ports must be drunk within 48 hours. As with ports, sherry should also be stored in a cool place, and delicate sherries like Fino and Manzanilla should be consumed immediately after opening.
About Port is made from grapes grown in the Douro Valley region in Northern Portugal. Sherry is made from white grapes in a town in Spain.
Texture Port wine has a richer, sweeter, and heavier texture than other wines, since it is fortified halfway through its fermentation process. Sherry is dry in texture, since it is fortified after completion of the fermentation process.
Alcohol content Port has a higher alcohol content (19.5-22%) compared to other wines. Sherry has an alcohol content of 11-12%
Styles Tawny port, Colheita (white or tawny), Garrafeira, Ruby port, Reserve or vintage port, Pink port, White port, Late Bottled Vintage, Crusted port, Vintage port wines, Aged Tawny (10, 20, 30, 40 years), and Aged White (10, 20, 30, 40 years). Fino, Manzanilla, Amontillado, Oloroso, Palo Cortado and Sweet sherries.

Contents: Port Wine vs Sherry

edit Main Differences

Port wine has a richer, sweeter, and heavier texture than other wines, and also a higher alcoholic content. It is commonly served with cheese like Stilton.

Sherry is dry in texture since it is fortified after completion of the fermentation process, as opposed to port wine, which is fortified halfway through the fermentation process.

edit History

The port wine–producing Douro region in Portugal was established in 1756 and is the third oldest protected wine region in the world. Port wine produced in this area was managed and protected by the C.G.A.V.A.D. (General Company of Viticulture o the Upper Douro) founded in the same year. The popularity of this wine grew in England in 1703 during the war with France, when the Methuen Treaty allowed merchants to import port wine at low costs, and its improved shelf life allowed it to be shipped from Portugal to England without getting spoiled.

The production of sherry in the Jerez area of Spain has been reported since 1100 BC. Sherry was introduced to the rest of the world by Christopher Columbus and later become popular in 1587. Due to the large wine export to the UK, many English companies and British families developed and founded cellars in Jerez region.

edit Styles

Port wine comes in different styles which undergo either reductive or oxidative aging. With reductive aging, the wine is aged in bottles, and remains unexposed to air. Oxidative aging is done in wooden barrels and the wine is exposed to some amount of oxygen. Port wine aged in bottles is smoother on the palate and less tannic than that aged in wooden barrels.

The main styles of port wine are:

The styles of sherry also differ according to the region it comes from and the extent of aging:

edit Storing and Serving

Port is generally stored in a cool place like a cellar with no exposure to sunlight. It is best to consume it within a few days of opening the bottle. Typically, Tawny and Ruby ports last longer than LBV and Vintage ports. As with ports, sherry should also be stored in a cool place, and delicate sherries like Fino and Manzanilla should be consumed immediately after opening.

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"Port Wine vs Sherry." Diffen.com. Diffen LLC, n.d. Web. 23 Jul 2014. < http://www.diffen.com/difference/Port_Wine_vs_Sherry >

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