Don´t ignore Vino Verdes – Cheap, low in alcohol, and nothing fancy. Just refreshing
COUNTRY OF PORT WINE: Portugal is a country for holiday, bacalao, the soulful Fado music and a wave for every ability as Europe´s best surfing destination. But this country is growing perfect to explore characterful Portuguese wines with flair and originality. Portugal wine is dark red, fruity green, light, the sweet Port wine, and the refreshing Vinho Verde.
Port is the most famous wine from Portugal, made of grapes grown along the Douro River in the Douro Valley. Not to forget Madeira from the island of Madeira, a wine ranged from dry to sweet.
Red wines are often bold with firm structure and dark fruit flavor. The best Portuguese reds combine a rich fruitiness with flavors like coffee and chocolate. They are aged in oak barrels. In poorer versions, fruit and oak battle in the mouth.
The Atlantic climate fills both reds and whites — made from little-known Portuguese grapes — with elegance, grace and the potential to age.
The Young One
You should not ignore Vino Verdes – or green wines. Their names are related to their youth, not their color. Vino Verdes can be white or red. These wines from the Minho region of north Portugal, are cheap, low in alcohol, inexpensive and nothing fancy – simply a blend of grapes. On a summer day, a good Vinho Verde is refreshing, like a great lemonade spritzer.
Principas Grape Varieties
While other countries are scrambling around looking to rediscover their native grape varieties as interest continues to increase in distinctive, Portugal carry on with native grapes as it has been all along. Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Trincadeira, Jaen, Tinta Roriz (Tempranillo), Baga, Arinto, Bical, Encruzado, the list of indigenous Portugese grape varieties goes on. The wines they produce are increasing in quality all the time, and the variety in table wine is exceptional.
Traditions in Tejo
The Tejo region is located a short drive from the capital city of Lisbon. Tejo claims a bounty of historical treasures scanning the pages of time, from Roman ruins and Gothic castles, to Manueline monasteries and medieval hilltop villages. Tejo is known as the land of vineyards, olive groves, cork forests, Mertolengo cattle, and the famous Lusitano horses.
Among unique traditions are foot-treading, crushing and stomping grapes, community harvest when local women hand-plucking ripe fruit while singing traditional folk songs, and usage of traditional cork from the region’s 30,000 acres of cork trees.
Famous wines from Duoro
Wine discovery comes in several levels of excitement, that´s my experience. From exclusive to that occasional undiscovered value to reassure that life can be delicious and affordable. Duoro is one of the Portuguese wine regions. The Broadbent Duoro Red is a blend and extraordinary red wine for a few dollars and amazing value for the price.
Its verve and tension are stimulating, and its flavors of plums and red berries, seasoned with some wood spice and earth, can match bold foods. If you open this to sip while cooking, have a second bottle on hand for dinner. You will need it.
Visit Dona Maria Winery
A palace-like house from the beginning of the 18th century. A place to visit for its beauty and its history and quality of wines.
A visit to Dona Maria Winery may include the gardens and the 18th century chapel dedicated to “Our Lady of Carmel”. Visit the vineyard, join wine tasting or a meal full of history served at the Palace.
Location: In the city of Estremoz, the Portuguese region of Norte Alentejo. Address: Quinta do Carmo, 7100-000 Estremoz, Portugal
The national shot
There is a great selection of wines to bring some Portuguese sunshine to your social gatherings. Surprisingly, in a country of exceptional wines and port it comes as a shock to know that its slogan is “O licor de Portugal” – meaning “The liquor from Portugal”. Licor Beirao is the national drink, spices and herbs-based liqueur originally made as medicinal aid for stomach pain. Believe it or not – with a delicate and fairly sweet taste.
Portugal: Favourite Tavira is no longer top secret