Brands Report 2020: Sherry

That 90% of our sample of the world’s best bars say they stock sherry goes some way to explain the renewed importance of this Spanish fortified in the modern cocktail bar.

In most cases that’s not just a single, lonely bottle either - half of our pool of respondants stocked three or more brands. Sherry is well and truly in play.

While some of the action is likely through by-the-glass sales, some classic cocktails call for the Jerez fortified too – notably the Bamboo, which is at 46 in our classics list this year. Probably most importantly, sherry is increasingly used in classic twists and other in-house creations. Its cause is helped by the fact that aromatised wine, the more bartenders also look to riff with other fortifieds. Sherry appears to be the first choice deputy, ahead of the likes of port, sauternes and madeira. Bringing puckering acidity from one flank, air-aged nutty character in the middle and deep vinous sweetness on the other – this is a category that offers the spectrum of flavours, satisfying just about every possible need.

But one brand stands above them all – Tío Pepe is an icon of its category. In a third of the bars polled that sell sherry, the fino in a green bottle is the choice. In two-thirds of cases, it’s one of the three bestselling sherries.

Lustau is a one-stop-shop for all sherry’s styles – manzanilla, fino, amontillado, palo cortado, oloroso, cream, muscatel and Pedro Ximinez. Lustau was found to be a top-three choice in more than half the bars polled; the house sherry in 16%.

Gonzalez Byass is, of course, the owner of Tío Pepe, but has an eponymous range too, offering the gamut of styles. It was a top-three choice in a quarter of bars, while the traditional bodega Valdespino, which is best known for its fino, Inocente, was available in around 15% of bars, with port and sherry producer Sandeman just behind.



The results of this report are the culmination of a questionnaire of 106 bars around the world, each cherry-picked to take part based on their performance in global bar awards. We aim to find out not only which brands sell best but also what’s trending. These two data sets give us an insight into the brands that are doing the most volume and the brands that are hot right now.

To read more on the methodology of the Brands Report click here.