Portuguese Wine and Grape Varieties

Tuesday, June 26th, 2007 at 12:00 am

Portugal winePortuguese wine is probably one of the most renowned wines in the world however its status is not based on table wine but on the fortified wines of Port and Madeira. Even though their strength is based on the fortified wines,

Portugal does produce excellent table wines which are located north of the country. Their wines are known to be a diverse mix of grape varieties whose leader of the pack is Touriga Nacional. This particular grape is the foundation for fine Ports and the various red wines of the Douro as well as holding an increasing presence in many other regions.

There are many regions which are classified here and there are other European wine-producing nations which are also classified in order to observe proper regulations. The main regions are referred to as Denominaçâo de Origem Controlada or DOC.

All up in the north, is the Douro DOC located near the river of the same name. They produce meaty, full-bodied and complex red wines whose names are famous as the Touriga Nacional, Quinta do Crasto and Reserva.

Nearby is Dao which is a promising region that sports good value as well as some white wines. Those from the single quinta estates are more likely to be of higher quality. Examples of these wines are the Quinta dos Roques, Quinta das Maias and Porta dos Cavalheiros.

Another DOC that is close is Bairrada which is able to produce a few good value red wines which  are of less importance than those coming from the first two DOCs. Bairrada is known for being the main source of grapes for Mateus Rose which is a medium, sweet carbonated wine which can be found in supermarket shelves the world over. The estate that you should look out for is Quinta do Riberinho.

Another region in the north is Vinho Verde which produces red and white wines. The wines here is known for a slight spritz which is, in modern times, known for carbon dioxide being added just before bottling.

Portuguese table wines are of frequently very good value. They have a variety which are considered to be excellent wines. The fortified wines from Douro are quite unrivalled and they are much imitated by countries such as Australia, France and the United States in California but any attempt is quite unsuccessful.

The different wines of Portugal are known to be of world-class quality. Although there are more popular wines to the common person, such as French wines and California wines, Portugal wines are still known to reside in the upper echelon when it comes to wine quality and taste.

However way other countries or wineries try to imitate the wines from Portugal, they won’t be able to because the quality and care that the Portuguese make their wine is unparalleled and that tradition will continue for generations to come. For those who are trying to catch up with the flavor and the renown that Portuguese wine have, those wineries and regions will probably just have to be content in placing second best.