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Pedro Ximénez grapes

by | Oct 20, 2016

Pedro Ximénez is a variety of grapes belonging to Vitis Vinifera species. It is a white color skin grape, used for making some of the very popular sherry- type wines.

Pedro Ximénez

The origin of this grape variety is believed to be in Spain. Some of the other names for Pedro Ximénez are; Pedro Jimenez, Perrum, Don Bueno etc.

Pedro Ximénez demands hot climate to grow, so vineyards of Australia, Spain, Portugal and Chile cheerfully grow this grape.

Montilla-Moriles, a region of Spain is particularly famous for growing PedroXiménez in their vineyards. About 23,680 acres of cultivated land in Spain are dominated by Pedro Ximénez.

Here in Montilla-Moriles, this grape is used in making fortified sherry-style wine. The wines made from Pedro Ximénez in Spain can be recognized from the label PX on the wine bottle.

Wine grape varieties

In Portugal, the wine regions like Evora and Borba indulge 860 acres of land to home PedroXiménez grapes. In Portugal, this grape is called Perrum and it is more preferred for blending than making wine.

Some South American countries like Chile and Argentina produce unfortified, dry and fruity wines from Pedro Ximénez.

Over the years the plantation of this grape has been declined in Australia, but some parts of the Margaret river region, Barrosa valley and rutherglen region continue planting Pedro Ximénezgrapes for making dry and unfortified wines.

History of Pedro Ximénez grapes

The history of Pedro Ximénez grapes is traced back in the late 17th century. It originated in the Andalusia region of Spain.
The origin of the name is still under speculation; some believe that a soldier or a catholic cardinal of the same name first brought this grape to Spain while others believe that the name PedroXiménez is a name of some village in Iberia.

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The credit for the introduction of PedroXiménez in Australia goes to James Busby, who brought the samplings of PedroXiménez in the year 1832.

The DNA analysis of PedroXiménez has confirmed that it is the offspring of Gibi, an Arabic table grapes variety.

Viticulture and winemaking of Pedro Ximénez grapes

This grape ripens during mid to late of the plantation season. The grape has large berries and the vines are dense.

Pedro Ximénez cultivation is more suited for medium-hot and warm climates. Although the vine is resistant to fungal diseases, but they can get damaged by termites.

Once the harvesting of PedroXiménez grapes is complete the grapes are kept in the sun to get dry. The water content from the berries gets evaporated and the concentration of sugar is increased.

After the sundry process is completed, the remaining liquids of Pedro Ximénez are partially fermented and then it is kept in the Solera system for aging.

Characteristics of Pedro Ximénez wines

The wines made up of PedroXiménez uses 85% of the grapes.
The content of alcohol in Pedro Ximénez wines is about 15.5% by volume.
They possess the acidity of 5.3 on the ph level. Pedro Ximénez wines have a high sugar content of 400 grams per liter.

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The average aging period for the wines made from this variety of grapes is 30 years. The wine is of dense ebony color and has an aroma of coffee and spices.

Pedro Ximénez grapes are famous for making sherry-style wine used for making dessert. The wine has varieties of tastes like chocolate, honey, fruits, resin etc. and these wines are considered as one of the sweetest in the world and fresh too.

Food pairing with Pedro Ximénez wines

These wines should be served at a chilled temperature of about 12 to 14 degree Celsius. Pedro Ximénez wines are made sweeter and mostly preferred with sweet dishes like sticky date pudding or vanilla ice cream.

Other meals like rice pudding and cheese products can go well with Pedro Ximénez wines.


Michael Bredahl

Michael Bredahl

Wine Writer

Michael is an online enthusiast, with a lot of knowledge about online marketing. Traveling around the world to hunt for the perfect wine. Latest on Sicily, where Etna has a huge impact on the taste, which is strong with a bitter aftertaste for the youngest wines, but older wines are fantastic. Drinking wine, and writing about them, are one the passions. Remember to drink responsibly 🙂

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