What's the difference between vermouth and Sherry?

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Dear Dr. Vinny,

What is the difference between vermouth and sherry?

—Maria, Sydney, Australia

Dear Maria,

Both vermouth and Sherry are fortified wines (meaning that distilled spirits are added), but the biggest distinction is that vermouth is flavored or "aromatized" with aromatic herbs and spices, often giving it a medicinal quality. Vermouth is made in a variety of both sweetened and unsweetened styles. Sherry, from the Jerez region of Spain, is made only from grapes; it can be made in a variety of styles—some dry and pale, others dark, sweet and rich.

—Dr. Vinny

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