The DO area, which applies only to white wines, is located on the Atlantic coast in the southern Spanish region of Andalusia, close to the border with Portugal. The vineyards cover around 5,500 hectares of vines and, at 25 metres above sea level, are only slightly above sea level. There is abundant rainfall. With 60% of the total area, the autochthonous white variety Zalema clearly dominates. Other white wine varieties are Listan(Palomino - the most important sherry grape), Garrido Fino, Moscatel(Muscat Blanc) and Pedro Ximénez. Experiments are increasingly being carried out with many red wine varieties, such as Monastrell and also international varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon.
In the 16th century the area was the main supplier of wines to the newly discovered South American colonies. Allegedly this was already practised by Christopher Columbus (1451-1506). In the 17th century the wine was then delivered in large quantities for the production of sherry to the neighbouring, south-east lying Jerez (now no longer permitted). Today, a Solera process is used to produce wines similar to the sherry types Fino and Oloroso, called Condao Pálido and Condado Viejo. Other products are Jovens (young wines) and Rancios.