Wine Region of Douro

Douro Portuguese Wine Region

The Portuguese wine region of Douro is the oldest demarcated wine region in the world: not the first place where grapes grew, but rather the earliest one gaining recognition.

The creation of exciting wines is partially due to the soil composition of the Douro Valley. A direct result of a result of a rocky, mostly comprised of schist terroir, which forces the vines to struggle through the rock to search for nutrients. In addition, the dry climate and sunlight of the Douro, while growing season elapses, heats up the schist, and punishes the vine roots. While all of this may sound painful, the vines end up producing remarkably intense and complex wines.

In terms of its table wines, the Douro is perhaps famous for its dry reds. The grape variety Touriga Nacional commonly produces these wines, although many wine producers blend it with other grape varieties , such as Tinta Roriz (Tempranillo), Touriga Franca and/or TintaBarroca.

On the white wine front, the most prominent varieties typically include Malvasia Fina, Rabigato, Viosinho, and Gouveio.

Some of the most recognized wineries are: Quinta da Pacheca, Casa Agrícola Roboredo Madeira (CARM), Caves de Santa Marta, Alves de Sousa

Food Pairings

Mature reds are lovely with certain types of Portuguese cheese, such as the locally produced goat cheese called Queijo de Cabra. For the younger, fruitier Douro reds, enjoy them with the Northern dish cabrito assado ou grelhado (roasted or grilled kid goat), veal chops and stewed rabbit- normally prepared with red wine – and some types of salt cod dishes.

One of the lesser-known styles of wines of the region, Douro whites, tend to be drier, smoother and richer than the southern coastal white ones, trading light citrus notes for abundant floral and mineral ones. Fuller-bodied age-worthy whites usually spend some time in oak, taking on a golden colour with rich tropical fruit flavours. Young Douro whites are great with grilled fish dishes. Shellfish also pairs well: crab, mussels and clams.

Mature Douro whites are nice with light bacalhau (salted cod) dishes, such as boiled salted cod with chickpeas or roasted salted cod. Alternatively, they pair well with meat dishes such as chicken and rabbit dishes with white sauces.

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