Some of The Best Wines The Algarve Has to Offer
Moving to the Algarve and love your wine? Believe me, you will not be disappointed! Apart from the fact it is really cheap and there is a great selection, it is also excellent in quality. Want to know more? Then read on!
The Algarve region of Portugal is home to a number of wineries that produce a variety of wine styles, including red, white, and rosé wines. The region has a long history of winemaking, with a tradition dating back to the Phoenicians, who are believed to have introduced winemaking to the region.
Algarves Grape Selection
The Algarve has a Mediterranean climate, which is well-suited to grape growing. We have several grape varieties that are native to the area, including;
Arinto is a versatile grape, grown in most of Portugal’s wine regions. In Vinho Verde country, it goes by the name of Pedernã.
Roupeiro is the most planted white grape variety in Alentejo and is the basis of Alentejo white wines. The wines are fresh and fruity, with aromas of pear and peach.
Antão Vaz as a single variety, has lively aromas, with hints of ripe tropical fruits, tangerine peel and something mineral, along with good structure and body.
If picked early, it gives wines with vibrant aromas and crisp acidity. Left to ripen longer, it can reach high levels of alcohol, making it a good candidate for barrel maturation. It is often blended with Roupeiro and Arinto, which contribute refreshing acidity.
These grape varieties are used to make a range of wine styles, including fruity whites, full-bodied reds, and crisp rosés.
Take the Wine Tours For a Great Day out
A number of wineries offer tastings and tours, allowing visitors to learn more about the region’s wine-making traditions and sample a variety of local wines.
Some of the more well-known wineries in the Algarve include Quinta do Francês and Quinta da Fonte Souto.
Perhaps the most visited is the Cantor Winery is located in Guia, just a few kilometres northwest of Albufeira, in the centre of the Algarve.
It was built to produce Vida Nova and Onda Nova wine, from the three farms around: Quinta do Moinho, Quinta do Miradouro and Quinta Vale do Sobreiro.
Their aim is to produce the best wine the region offers, combining traditional production techniques with the most modern and innovative ones.
The Adega is located at the top of Quinta do Miradouro and offers breathtaking views of the vineyards and the sea and was previously owned by British singer Sir Cliff Richards.
Sir Cliff Richards – A New Life
Sir Cliff Richard is a British singer, actor, and philanthropist who has been active in the entertainment industry for over 60 years. He is also known for his love of wine and has been involved in the wine industry for several years.
In the early 2000s, Sir Cliff Richard partnered with a winery in Portugal’s Algarve region to create his own wine label, Vida Nova (New Life). The wines produced under this label are made from grapes grown in the Algarve region and include red, white, and rosé varieties. Sir Cliff Richard has said that he is particularly fond of the red wines produced under the Vida Nova label.
He has also been involved in other wine-related projects, such as promoting the wines of the Algarve region and hosting wine tastings and events. In addition, he is an ambassador for the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET), an organisation that provides education and training in the wine and spirits industry.
It is worth noting that Sir Cliff Richard is also known for his generosity and he uses some of the profits from his wine business to support charitable causes, particularly those related to children and young people.
5 Great Tips to Get to Known Algarve Wines
- Explore the different regions and wine styles of Portugal: Portugal is home to many different wine regions and styles, such as Douro Valley for Port wine, Vinho Verde for white wines, Dão for red wines, and others. You could explore the unique characteristics of each region, including the grape varieties grown, and the combination of factors including soil, climate, and sunlight that gives wine grapes their distinctive character along with the winemaking techniques used.
- Explore the history and tradition of Portuguese wines: Portugal has a long history of winemaking, dating back to the Roman era. You could delve into the history of the country’s wine industry, including the role of monasteries in wine production and the impact of the 1755 Lisbon earthquake on the industry.
- Compare Portuguese wines to those from other countries: Portugal is often overshadowed by more well-known wine regions like France, Italy, and Spain. However Portuguese wines compare quite well in terms of quality, price, and style to those from other countries.
- Visit some of the top Portuguese wineries and wines: Research some of the best-known and reputable wineries and wines in Portugal such as Quinta do Noval, Graham’s, Dow’s and others. You could focus on a few specific wineries or wines and explore detailed information about their history, winemaking methods, and tasting notes.
- Find out about the future of the Portuguese wine industry: The Portuguese wine industry is evolving and changing. You could learn about the new trends in the industry, such as the increased use of technology in winemaking and the growing popularity of organic and biodynamic wines.
Reaching Our Top 10 Portuguese White Wines Available in The Algarve
It is difficult to say what the top ten white wines in Portugal are, as it can vary depending on personal taste and the specific wine region or producer. However, some of the most well-known and highly regarded white wines from Portugal include:
- Vinho Verde – Vinho Verde is a wine region in the northwest of Portugal and it produces white, red and rosé wines. The white Vinho Verde is known for its light body, high acidity, and low alcohol content. It is a refreshing wine with a greenish-yellow colour and a fruity aroma. It’s often consumed young, as it doesn’t have a long ageing potential.
- Alvarinho/Albariño – Alvarinho/Albariño is a grape variety grown in the northwest of Portugal and northwest of Spain. The wine is known for its medium body, high acidity, and minerality. It has aromas and flavours of green apples, peaches, and citrus fruits, and it’s often aged in oak barrels.
- Arinto – Arinto is a grape variety grown in the central region of Portugal. The wine is known for its high acidity, minerality and citrus-like character. It has a greenish-yellow colour and a fruity aroma.
- Encruzado – Encruzado is a grape variety grown in the Dão region of Portugal. The wine is known for its high acidity, earthy, and floral aroma. It has a pastel yellow colour and a fruity aroma.
- Bical – Bical is a grape variety grown in the Bairrada region of Portugal. The wine is known for its high acidity, minerals and floral aroma. It has a canary yellow appearance and a fruity aroma.
- Cercial – Cercial is a grape variety grown in the Azores region of Portugal. The wine is known for its high acidity and generous floral aroma. It has a transparent lemony palette with a flavour of fruit juice on a wet stone.
- Gouveio – Gouveio is a grape variety grown in the Douro region of Portugal. The wine is known for its high acidity, mineral, and floral aroma. It has a yellow colour and a fruity aroma.
- Malvasia Fina – Malvasia Fina is a grape variety grown in the Douro region of Portugal. It has a slight citrus colour with a taste of white flowers and citrus fruit. On the palate, it is light and smooth with a fresh taste.
- Fernão Pires – Fernão Pires is a grape variety grown in the Tejo region of Portugal. It is known to produce wines with a spicy aromatic character often with delicate exotic fruity flavours.
- Antão Vaz – Antão Vaz is a grape variety grown in the Alentejo region of Portugal. Having lively aromas, with hints of ripe tropical fruits and tangerine. The wine is known for its high acidity and goes well with seafood and Mediterranean cuisine.
Now For Our Top 10 Portuguese Red Wines in The Algarve
Some of the most well-known and highly regarded red wines from Portugal include:
- Douro – This wine is made from grapes grown in the Douro Valley in northern Portugal. It is known for its full-bodied, robust flavour and its complex tannins. Douro wines are typically aged in oak barrels, with a spicy plum fruit hint and a pleasant level of acidity.
- Dão – This wine is made from grapes grown in the Dão region of Portugal. It is known for its bright acidity and medium body, with flavours of red and black fruits. The wines are mostly aged in oak barrels which gives them a spicy, smoky and nutty character.
- Bairrada – This wine is made from grapes grown in the Bairrada region of Portugal. It is known for its rich, full-bodied flavour and high tannins. The wines are often aged in oak barrels, which gives them a distinct vanilla and spice flavour.
- Alentejo – This wine is made from grapes grown in the Alentejo region of Portugal. It is known for its rich, full-bodied flavour and complex tannins. The wines are often aged in oak barrels, with an aroma of wild berries and red fruits.
- Vinhos Verdes – This wine is made from grapes grown in the Vinhos Verdes region of Portugal. It is known for its light body, high acidity and low alcohol content. It is a refreshing wine with an intense red colour and a rather fruity aroma.
- Colheita – This wine is a single-harvest wine aged in oak barrels for at least a year before being bottled. It is known for its rich, complex flavour and long finish.
- Tawny – This wine is a blend of wines aged for a period of years in oak barrels before being bottled. It is known for its rich, nutty flavour and strong taste.
- Late Bottled Vintage – This wine is aged for a period of 4-6 years in oak barrels before being bottled. It is known for its rich strong flavour which is a mix of cherry coffee and cocoa.
- Vintage – This wine is made from grapes harvested in a single year, and aged for two years in oak barrels before being bottled. With a delicate aroma of caramel, cherry and forest berries.
- Crusted Port – This wine is a blend of different vintage ports aged for a period of years in oak barrels before being bottled. Purple black almost ruby in colour with powerful dark chocolate and cherry aroma.
Please note that not all wines will have the same characteristics as it depends on the winemaker’s choice. The soil, weather conditions, and other factors can also lead to variations in both aroma and flavour. The choices on this list are not in any particular order and it’s based on my personal taste.
Our Top 8 Wines Freely Available In The Algarve
If you are just wanting quick recommendations and favourites from the choices available in most of the Algarve supermarkets, restaurants and bars you would not go wrong with the following tipples.
- Marques de Bobra – 5 euros
- Quinta do Carmo – 8 euros
- JP (João Portugal) – 2 euros
- Joao Pires – 4 euros
- Pouco Ropa – 4 euros
- Guadeloupe – 4 euros
- Chaminé – 6 euros
- Periquita – 5 euros
Prices are approximate and can vary from place to place. Obviously, restaurants and bars will change between 16-24 euros for the examples above.
To Conclude Our Algarve Wine Review
Living in the Algarve brings many advantages to the quality of life we lead, for those who love wine it is one more tick on the plus side!
The Algarve is a great destination for wine lovers, with a diverse range of wine styles and a rich winemaking tradition. With very reasonable prices, so what’s not to like?
I have lived in the Algarve for over 20 years and love the experience. Now writing about and photographing the Algarve experience to share with others.
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