Search Results for: Portugal and Douro

Portugal: wines from the edge of Europe

Having just spent a week popping around some of the wine regions of Portugal, I'm struck again at what good value modern Portuguese wines offer and, with the exception of port, how little known they are in the U.S. As noted in my last post (see below) even the port world is trying to catch up with contemporary drinkers, emphasizing cocktails with white port and (I think) somewhat less successful rosé port. Vinho verde is another category of Portuguese wine that a few Americans know. Certainly the low-alcohol, often bracingly acidic wines of the north coastal region are a perfect fit with summer dining. I stopped at historic Quinta da Aveleda (above), where the venerable low-end Casal Garcia brand with its blue and white lace...Read More

Fado in a Douro vineyard The hotel at Quinta do Vallado (see last post) sits at an elevation of about 450 meters above sea level – a long way up a steep hillside from the Douro River in Portugal. But the highest vineyards, which are planted with a magical, almost mystical mix of heritage grapes (perhaps as many as 30 varieties) on vines that are close to 100 years old, are way up the hill at around 600 meters. Before we left Vallado to make our way to Quinta do Crasto, one of the staff drove us up to the top to survey the vineyards. On the way back down, around 550 meters, we saw a work crew topping the Touriga Nacional vines and tying them on wires. As...Read More

The sweet taste of the Douro

Francisco Ferreira waxed rhapsodic – and contrary to expectation. One of the original “Douro Boys,” the semi-revolutionary gang who have made Douro table wine almost better known than port in some quarters, Ferreira got a faraway look in his eyes. “I still make port because it is a fantastic product, and because, well...” He swept his arms out to gesture at the dramatic hillside, “well, we are in the Douro.” In fact, he makes vintage port (the just-declared 2011 is already spectacular) and a 20-year-old tawny. We were having dinner at Quinta do Vallado (Vilarinho dos Freires, Peso da Regua, +351 254 324326,, the family estate that has also been a wine tourism destination in Portugal since 2005 – all the more so since...Read More

The Wine List on HungryTravelers

 Here are some links to posts about these wines:Argentina-MendozaBarons de RothschildCôtes de ProvenceFranciacortaFrescobaldiMontepulciano d'AbuzzoNew ZealandPantelleriaPaso RoblesPortugalProseccoSan Luis ObispoTrentino VQA OntarioWashington State

Symington shows how port can relax

The fourth generation of the Symington clan that came to Portugal in 1882, Dominic Symington is one of a passel of cousins who run the wide-ranging port empire that includes Cockburn's, Warre's, Dow's, and Graham's, along with Quinto do Vesúvio and Altano table wines. When a group of us touring wine estates in the Douro Valley stopped in Pinhao to see the amazing tile murals at the train station (like the one above), Symington offered to pick us up for lunch – by boat. We met him at the town dock, where one of his daughters and a friend were helping him dock his small speedboat. “It's much faster than driving on the road,” he shrugged, as we sped a half hour upriver to the...Read More