Wines from Portugal
Portugal has long been known for its wines from the islands of Madeira and the city of Porto, which bear their names. However, this does not cover the diversity and potential of the state as a wine producer.More
Especially in the last few decades, it has undergone an almost wine revolution, both in terms of technology, styles and attitudes for winemaking, and with its focus on its own endemic grape varieties. Perhaps the most attractive is the Douro Valley with its rich ripe table red wines of the Touriga Nacional variety. The annual production varies between 600 and 670 million liters, which puts it only in 11th place in the world.
What are the varieties and regions in Portugal?
The many varieties of vines in Portugal and their countless regional synonyms are the curse of ampelographs. Some are endemic to Portugal (Touriga Nacional), while others are shared with neighboring Spain but have a local name - for example, Tinta Roriz is the Spanish Tempranillo). In total, about 250 varieties are considered native, endemic. The terroir identity in the country is not as diverse as in France or Italy, but there are still significant differences between its mountainous regions, river and sandy coastal plains and limestone-rich coastal hills. The most famous regions are the Douro Valley, Altenejo, Vinho Verde and, of course, the islands of Madeira. Of the grape varieties the most known is the red Touriga Nacional. It is the basis of the Douro Valley wines, as well as the fortified wines of Porto. Along with it quite common and wide spread is Tinta Roriz, known worldwide by the Spanish name Tempranillo. More and more producers are turning their eyes to local varieties such as Baga, Rabigato and others. White local varieties are less known and less common, with Alvarinho, Verdelho and Loreiro predominating.
How to choose a good Portuguese wine?
When we say "Portuguese wine", the first thing that comes to mind are the fortified wines of Porto and Madeira. Of course, they would be a great and safe choice, although they do not suit every table. For fans of dry wines, the Douro Valley offers an incredible variety of quality red wines, with the dominant variety Touriga Nacional, often blended with Tempranillo (Tinta Rorez). Do not miss the local varieties, they are usually written on the labels - not only from this, but also from other regions of the country. They have something to show, they have something to win you over, while they caress your palate with their amazing tastes and aromas. Not only red but also white wines are available in a wide range - from fresh and relatively floral and elegant from Vinho Verde, to dense and saturated, with a long aftertaste and a long-lasting sense of enjoyment and pleasure. And if you haven't tried port wine yet, start with the Seewines list of carefully selected manufacturers.