What can I use instead of Fino Sherry? We found the best substitute for Fino Sherry to be dry white wine, dry vermouth, dry Madeira, dry marsala, white wine vinegar, and sherry vinegar.
Fino sherry is a type of sherry made from Palomino grapes it’s a fortified dry wine with sharp flavors yet has delicate flavors of almonds with hints of bread notes and wild herbs. It’s an excellent aperitif to stimulate taste buds and is wonderfully paired with foods both in cooking and in accompanying meals.
The Best Fino Sherry Substitutes
Dry White Wine
A refreshing dry white wine makes an excellent substitute for fino sherry.
As with sherry, dry white wines are made from fermented grapes with a low sugar content, 1% or less. Strategically selected varieties of grapes and the time they are harvested dictates the dryness of the wine.
Although each wine has slight variations in nuances, the general taste notes of a dry white wine are acidic, citrusy, fruity flavors with hints of almond and herbaceousness.
Dry white wines are well paired with light seafood, spicy curries, and salad vinaigrettes. They also brighten the flavors of your dish thanks to the acidity used to make creamy white sauces and braising chicken thighs in dry white wine with fresh herbs accentuating the flavors.
When substituting fino sherry with white wine, you can use a 1:1 ratio.
The best dry white wines to use are:
- Sauvignon blanc
- Pinot Blanc
- Pinot Gris
Dry vermouth is another excellent substitute for fino sherry.
Made from fortified wine blended with a small amount of distilled spirit, which is usually brandy and aromatized with herbs and spices.
Dry white vermouths originated in France in 1813 and were made famous for creating the dry martini. They come from clear to pale yellow colorations and contain less than 5% sugar per liter.
Depending on the producer’s recipe, there are several variations, but in general dry vermouths are full-bodied, light in tannin, with floral and herbal notes and undertones of fruitiness.
Dry vermouth makes an excellent martini, but it’s also great served alongside tapa-styled foods and perfect for sauces, thanks to the infusion of herbs.
For a delicious French onion soup, then dry vermouth makes the perfect replacement at an equal ratio of 1:1
Some recommended vermouths:
Cinzano Extra Dry
Martini & Rossi Riserva Speciale Ambrato
A bottle of dry Madiera makes a good substitute for fino sherry.
Madiera is a fortified wine made from grapes in the Madiera islands in Portugal since the 15th century, producing wines from sweet to dry that are used for dessert wines or aperitifs, respectively.
A dry Madiera is called a sercial wine style with characteristics of high-toned colors, flavors of almond nuts, high acidity, and made with very low residual sugar.
This wine style is drunk as an aperitif to awaken the taste buds allowing you to fully savor the flavors of the accompanying foods, such as shellfish and salty cheese.
Dry Madiera is also used in sauces and baking for the traditional Madiera cake.
When substituting fino sherry with dry Madiera, use a 1:1 ratio.
Some popular Madiera wines you can use are:
- Rare Wine Co. Charleston sercial
- Henriques & Henriques Sercial 10-year-old
- Blandy’s Rich Malmsey Madiera- 10-year-old
Dry Marsala is a popular substitute for fino sherry.
Marsala is a fortified wine blended with brandy, made through a complex wine-making process using indigenous Sicilian grapes only.
True Marsala wines are made in Sicily, Italy, under the Protection Designation of Origin (PDO).
The drier versions are low in tannins with hints of brown sugar and honey, with nutty flavors of walnut and vanilla with a fruitiness of dried fruits.
Fine or superior marsala wines are more commonly used in savory cooking to create rich, nutty, caramelized sauces. Pairs well with hard-to-pair foods such as asparagus and Brussels sprouts.
It’s also traditionally served as a mid-course aperitif or with parmesan, gorgonzola, and Roquefort cheese.
You can use a ratio of 1:1 when substituting with Marsala wine.
Some favorite dry marsala wines are:
- Florio Dry Marsala
- Colombo Marsala Dry
- Pellegrino Marsala Dry
White Wine Vinegar
A non-alcoholic substitute for fino sherry is white wine vinegar.
As its name suggests, white wine vinegar is made from white wine fermented and oxidized into a palatable acid between 5 to 7 percent that provides fruity flavors through distillation in stainless steel vats and can be commercially produced through fast or slow fermentation.
The first documentation of white wine vinegar was in ancient Babylonian times, around 3000 BC.
It has a bolder flavor than dry sherry with high acidity that amps up flavors with a fruity note.
It’s used as a complex profile to make pan sauces, such as Hollandaise and Béarnaise.
Due to the higher acidity, use one tablespoon of vinegar when substituting a ¼ cup of sherry.
Another alternative is to use red wine vinegar; it has a more vibrant grape flavor with more substantial tangs and a harsher finish, often used in rich tomato-based sauces.
Sherry vinegar made from Palomino grapes is a jackpot non-alcoholic substitute for fino sherry.
Sherry vinegar has been around for as long as sherry has. It’s a gourmet wine vinegar produced in the province of Cadiz, Spain, inside the sherry triangle.
Under the Protection Designation of Origin (PDO) and European laws, it must be aged at least six months in American oak barrels and have a minimum acidity level of 7%.
Dry sherry vinegar has a slightly nutty profile with woody and hay notes with no boozy punch but adds a more acidic tang.
It adds complexity to dishes and elevates the taste by brightening soups, stews, sauces, and casseroles.
Due to its intensity, substitute a ¼ cup fino sherry with 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar.
Some of the best dry sherry vinegars to buy:
- Columela Sherry vinegar reserve
- Grand Gusto from Bodega Paez Morilla
- Gutierrez Colosia barrel-aged vinegar