You may love taking a glass of wine as you have your meals or sipping it at any time of day when you feel like you need to spoil yourself a bit. Imagine getting a chance to visit a place solely to taste the different delicious wines on offer.
Douro Valley Wine Tours are an excellent means to give you that longed-for taste of fine wine while offering a fantastic scenery of a mighty river, green hills, olive groves and lush vineyards. However, to enjoy the wines, cuisines, and vistas, you must have a clue of where to go.
One place you must visit is the Quinta do Foz Winery. It is at the junction of the Douro and Pinhao rivers, an ideal location to either take a hike in the gardens or taste wine while enjoying the beautiful surroundings. At the facilities, you get a history of how they made wine in the past by crushing grapes using the foot-stomping method, though they still employ the technique to date for 75% of wine production. The tour guide is patient to allow you to taste different ones such as land of reds, tawny port, blend of indigenous whites and a reserve. He also explains the best food to accompany each wine.
You must also take a boat ride down the Douro River which gives you a fantastic view of the landscape and makes you appreciate the challenge of vineyard cultivation on extremely steep hills. A private tour is the best way to enable you to enjoy the experience. You will probably be hungry by the end of the boat ride, and the local restaurants offer various Portuguese dishes such as Tripas a Modo do Porto( a Port traditional tripe stew) Bolo Barrachao and Pesacado Gratabizado (a fish casserole of sorts).
You can not only taste wine at the Douro Valley but also taste olive oil at D’Origem, where the traditional method process of pressing olive oil they use will fascinate you. The original method involved harvesting olives by hand, crushing them for about half an hour till they become a paste, adding hot water to the paste to heat it, spreading it around using woven rugs and a machine transporting the mats to a press which produces the oil.
Quinta do Jaloto is a family winery in the valley and has been a wine producer for almost 100 years. They produce 10,000 bottles annually and use the foot-stomping method. They use oak barrels to age the wine before bottling it. It’ terrace is the best place to get a 180 degrees view of Douro valley and vineyards, while the mayor is the winemaker.
Quinta do Bucheiro will culminate the tour. The winery is in a home built in 1751. It has collections of treasures and antiques from the valley, adding a magical touch to the wine-making culture in the Douro. The dark tunnels in the home, which were mining tunnels, are now natural refrigerators.
The Douro Valley is indeed more than just a destination for wine-tasting therefore as you consider traveling to the valley, you might need to plan to stay for a few days since one day is not enough to truly appreciate all that the area has to offer. The Vintage House is ideal and provides a perfect view of the Douro River.