Europe Portugal Regions Travel Wine

Portuguese Wine: The Friend That’s Been There All Along

Portugal is the new hot traveling spot, or so it seems. It’s got all the charm and history of any European country, but without all the pretense. This writer got the opportunity four years ago to visit friends who live in Lisbon and got to see first-hand the marvelousness of the capital city with its tiled buildings, cobble stone streets, beach-adjacentness, incandescent Fado music, and all around good vibes.

Lisbon is definitely a city for romantics. Porto is also an amazing stop over, what with its sea-faring feel, old-timey buildings–like an old seaport town that is now just beginning anew. Both cities, and the country at large, also have wine. Port hails from (obvi) Porto, but recently some amazing vintners have been making really good wine at really great prices that are worth your looking into.

As luck would have it, one of our WineNight team members, Sarah Thompson, the Marketing Director, went to a wedding this past weekend in the Duoro valley and stayed at The Wine House Hotel – Quinta Da Pacheca.

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Photo: The Wine House Hotel

One of the best known estates in the Douro region, Quinta Da Pacheca was also one of the first properties to bottle wine under its own label. It’s first mentioned in a document dated April 1738, where is it referred as “Pacheca’s”, because it was property of D. Mariana Pacheco Pereira. But it was only in 1903, when Dom José Freire de Serpa Pimentel decided to develop his interest in oenology, that he bought the estate and began to seriously dedicate himself to the risky business of winemaking. Today, a century and many successes later, a brand-new generation of the Serpa Pimentel family is making wine.

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Sarah was totally blown away by the region and wines of Quinta Da Pacheca, and of Portugal as a whole, so it inspired us to give Portuguese wines their proper due.

As many know, Madeira and Port have long been the Portuguese drinks of choice, but as of late, due to an uptick in economics and joining the European Union, Portugal has been making some of the best wine for the least dough, hands down.

We love everything Portugal is doing right now when it comes to wine, life and style (we even heard a rumor Madonna is taking her dancers there for a year!), so we want to encourage head into your local wine shop and ask for the below Portuguese wines by region or varietal and give them a whirl.

These are the names of areas and the grapes that are producing and creating the country’s top wines. Ask for them by name. You won’t be disappointed.

REGIONS

  • Douro
  • Dao
  • Bairrada
  • Vinho Verde
  • Terras do Sado
  • Alentejo
  • Arinto
  • Encruzado
  • Antão Vaz

VARIETALS

Whites:

  • Loureiro
  • Arinto
  • Malvasia
  • Fina
  • Alvarinho

Reds:

  • Touriga Nacional
  • Tinta Roriz
  • Baga
  • Castelao
  • Trincadeira
  • Alicante Bousche
  • Jaen

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