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    How Long Does Sherry Last:? (Opened, Unopened & Expiry)

    How Long Does Sherry Last

    There really is no better aperitif than a cold glass of dry Sherry and a handful of salted almonds. 

    Sherry wines have some of the most exciting and complex ageing processes in the wine world, but how long does Sherry last once you’ve purchased a bottle?

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    How Long Does Sherry Last?

    Generally, an unopened bottle of Sherry can last 1 to 5 years. While an opened bottle of Sherry lasts a few days to a year. The shelf life of Sherry varies depending on its style and whether the bottle is opened or unopened. 

    It's important to keep in mind that the time Sherry lasts is heavily effected by the  type of Sherry itself.

    How Long Does Sherry Last Opened?

    Sherry Wine Bottles

    Depending on the type of Sherry, an opened bottle can either last you 1-3 days or a few months:

    • Try to drink the drier styles, like Manzanilla and Fino Sherry, within 1-3 days of opening.
    • Sweeter styles of Sherry, Amontillado, Palo Cortado, Oloroso and Pedro Ximenex, can last 2-3 months after opening.

    But what about those unopened bottles you’ve been saving for a special occasion?

    How long are your unopened bottles of Sherry good for?

    How Long Does Sherry Last Unopened?

    Wine Storage

    As with all things Sherry, the answer here very much depends on the style. 

    • Unopened Fino, Manzanilla and Pedro Ximenex can last 2-3 years.
    • Amontillado and Palo Cortado can last a little bit longer, around 3 years if the bottle is unopened.
    • Last but not least, Oloroso can last for about 5+ years if stored well.

    It’s worth noting that if any of these styles have been blended with cream then they will only keep well for about a year.

    So how can you store your Sherry to make it last for as long as possible?

    How To Store Opened Sherry 

    Sherry Being Served

    Very few of us are capable of finishing off a bottle of Sherry in one go, so how can you store opened bottles of Sherry? 

    You’ll be pleased to know it’s not rocket science.

    Make sure to put a stopper in your sherry and keep it in a cool, dark and quiet area.

    A wine fridge is ideal here but if not a kitchen fridge will be just fine. 

    But what about storing unopened bottles of Sherry?

    How To Store Unopened Sherry

    Unopened sherry will like lots of quiet and calm, so store any unopened bottles of Sherry somewhere: cool and dark, where there will be minimal interruptions from vibrations and loud noises. 

    Unlike red and white wine, store your unopened Sherry upright, as this will help to reduce the amount of oxygen that comes into contact with the wine. 

    Wine cellars or wine coolers work great here, and if you have any questions about specialised wine storage please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

    But is Sherry capable of going bad over time?

    Does Sherry Go Bad?

    Sherry is a fortified wine which means it’s a pretty hardy tipple, but even then, it’s still capable of diminishing over time. 

    So how do you know if Sherry has gone bad?

    How Can You Tell If Sherry Has Gone Bad?

    Sherry Gone Bad Tests

    Luckily for us, there are some really obvious tell tale signs that a Sherry has gone bad:

    • Keep an eye out for lots of sediment appearing in the glass or bottle, as this is a sign of overly oxidised Sherry. 
    • If the cork is so dry it is crumbling into the glass then it’s safe to say the Sherry isn’t in a position to be drunk.
    • If you can smell Sherry vinegar instead of just Sherry then it’s time to get rid of the bottle.
    • Take a sip, if the Sherry tastes flat and sour and unpleasant to drink then it’s safe to say the Sherry is no longer good.

    So can a fridge help to keep Sherry fresher for longer?

    Do You Keep Opened Sherry In The Fridge?

    Wine Fridge

    Yes, you absolutely should keep opened Sherry in the fridge! 

    Reinsert the original cork, make sure to place the bottle upright and then the fridge will do the rest.

    Related Guide: Red Wine Storage Temperature Guide

    So can unopened bottles of Sherry go in the fridge, too?

    Do You Keep Unopened Sherry In The Fridge?

    If you have a specialised wine fridge then you can keep any unopened bottles of Sherry there, safe in the knowledge they’ll be stored in perfect conditions.

    However, if you don’t have a wine fridge you can always opt for a wine cellar or just a place in your home with little exposure to noise, light and vibrations such as a garage or pantry. 

    So does Sherry have an expiration date?

    Does Sherry Expire?

    We are sorry to say that just because Sherry has been fortified does not mean that it is immortal.

    Sherry will diminish over time, so be sure to drink those bottles whilst they’re still good!

    Summary of How Long Sherry Lasts?

    Here's everything you need to know about how long sherry wine lasts:

    Topic Duration
    Opened Sherry 1-3 days for drier styles, 2-3 months for sweeter styles
    Unopened Sherry 2-3 years for Fino, Manzanilla, and Pedro Ximenex; around 3 years for Amontillado and Palo Cortado; 5+ years for Oloroso (1 year if blended with cream)
    Storage for Opened Sherry Use a stopper and store in a cool, dark, and quiet area (wine fridge or kitchen fridge)
    Storage for Unopened Sherry Store in a cool, dark, and quiet place; upright position to reduce oxygen exposure (wine cellar, wine cooler, garage, or pantry)
    Signs of Bad Sherry Lots of sediment, crumbling cork, smell of Sherry vinegar, flat and unpleasant taste
    Keeping Opened Sherry in the Fridge Yes, with the original cork and upright position
    Keeping Unopened Sherry in the Fridge Use a wine fridge or store in a cool place with minimal exposure to noise, light, and vibrations
    Expiration of Sherry Sherry will diminish over time, so drink it while it's still good

    Before You Go... 


    We hope this provides you all the information you may need on how long does Sherry last?

    Interested to know more about how long wine lasts?

    Check out our full guide here:

    How Long Does Wine Last

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    philip thompson Author: Philip Thompson
    Philip is the General Manager at Expert Wine Storage, and is very knowledgable about all things relating to wine and wine storage, including wine fridges. He is regularly featured in media outlets sharing his knowledge on wine. Connect on Linkedin