The Douro Valley
Reinventing Portugese Wine
- Oporto, Portugal’s second largest city, sits on the mouth of the Douro River
- Rabelos once carried Port 100 miles downstream, from the vineyards to the aging lodges
- Casks for aging ruby port at Graham’s lodge in Vila Nova de Gaia
- Our two days in Oporto also include tastings at Graham’s, Ramos Pinto, Kopke, Calem, and Taylor.
- Learning the various styles of ruby and tawny Port at Graham’s.
- On day 3 we move upstream to the vineyards. Here, Niepoort’s Quinta do Napoles.
- Niepoort is a historic Port firm, but has also moved into dry table wine
- “The Douro Boys” are spearheading the rise of top-quality Douro DOC wines.
- Our visit to Niepoort includes a homemade lunch.
- Another key member of the Douro Boys: Christian Van Zeller at Quinta Vale Dona Maria
- The Tedo tributary flows into the Douro River, covered in mist.
- Quinta do Tedo, owned by a family from Burgundy, is among the Port producers that sprung up after a change in Port laws in 1987.
- Quinta do Tedo’s terraced vineyards in spring.
- All aboard! The train from Pinhão to Quinta do Vesuvio passes through some of the most spectacular stretches of the Douro valley.
- Warre’s terraced vineyards
- Terraced cover the steep granite and schist hills flanking the river.
- Way upstream, the Vesuvio wine estate has its own train stop.
- Dona Antonia was Portugal’s answer to Veuve Clicquot, being the largest landholder in the Douro.
- Quinta do Vesuvio was Dona Antonia’s favorite among her 30 wineries. Is it any wonder?
- At Vesuvio, Port is still made the old-fashioned way—with foot-treading in granite lagars.
- The aging casks for Vesuvio’s single-quinta Port.
- Jackie Dias from Symington, our gracious host at Quinta do Vesuvio, offers the succulent 1996.