Fortified wines add Brandy or other grape spirits to the juice during the fermentation process. Once added, the Brandy stops the fermentation process, leaving a higher sugar content in the wine.

Popular Fortified Wines  

  • PORT: a fortified Portuguese wine produced with distilled grape spirits in the Douro Valley. Port is typically a sweet, heavy bodied red wine, but can come in dry, semi-dry, and white styles. In the U.S., true Portuguese Port wines will be labeled either “Oporto”, “Porto”, or “Vinho do Porto”.
  • SHERRY: a fortified white wine made from grapes grown near Jerez de la Frontera in Andalusia, Spain. Sherry is produced in several different styles such as Manzanilla and Fino, which are similar to a white table wine. Amontillado and Oloroso-style Sherries are allowed to oxidize as they age in the barrel, making them heavier bodied and darker in color. 
  • SAUTERNES: a sweet, white French wine from the Sauternais region of Bordeaux. Made from Sémillon, Sauvignon Blanc, and Muscadelle grapes that have been affected by Botrytis cinerea, or noble rot. This causes partial raisining of the grapes, resulting in distinct and concentrated wines.
  • MADEIRA: a fortified Portuguese wine made on the Madeira Islands. It is produced in styles ranging from dry wines you can drink on their own, to sweet wines that pair well with dessert. Cheaper cooking-style Madeiras are flavored with salt and pepper.