A brilliant resource for Douro fans: map of the Quintas

Really delighted to stumble across this superb online resource. It’s The Port Lovers’ Forum map of Douro Quintas.

For anyone like me who has been to the Douro a number of times, this is a brilliantly useful map. If you travel around the region by road, it’s really easy to be disoriented. Travelling by river is [...]

1952 Colheita from Graham for the Diamond Jubilee

Old wines? I love them. And some of the best old wines are fortified wines: Madeira, Vintage Port, Tawny Port and VORS Sherry.

This is a 60 year old single-vintage Tawny Port (the official name for vintage dated Tawnies is Colheita), released to commerate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. It’s fabulous and expensive, but good value when [...]

In the Douro, at Warre's Quinta da Cavadinha in the Pinhao Valley

A short film from a visit to Warre’s Quinta da Cavadinha, in the heart of the beautiful Pinhao Valley. I am with Paul Symington and viticulturist Miles Edlmann.

Highlights from yesterday's New Douro tasting

Yesterday’s New Douro tasting was one of the best yet. While the emphasis was on the 2009 vintage, producer’s also brought the odd older wine, which was appreciated. 2009 is a ripe, warm year, but despite the heat and lack of rain that characterized this vintage, the wines have a lovely purity and openness to [...]

Harvest time at Quinta de Roriz (Video)

Here’s a short film from this year’s harvest at Quinta de Roriz in Portugal’s Douro region. This is where the famous table wine Chryseia is made. It’s a beautiful property. We also get to see the Mistral sorting machine at work: this uses a jet of air to blow away raisined berries which would contribute [...]

A superb, affordable Port from Grahams

Now this is pretty smart. It may only be an LBV, with a T-top rather than driven cork. But it’s actually a really good Port, and worth thinking about as something to have on hand as the nights draw in and finishing the day with a glass of something sweet, delicious and alcoholic becomes an [...]

Video: mechanical/robotic foot treading for Port

In this short film, Paul Symington describes the way his company have pioneered the use of mechanical foottreaders (also known as robotic lagares) for Port production. It’s not straighforward: Port needs a rapid but relatively gentle extraction, and the human foot is especially good at this.

Video: the spectacular Quinta dos Malvedos in the Douro, Portugal

A film from my recent Douro visit. It’s Graham’s spectacular Quinta dos Malvedos, shot the day before harvest began.

For more on Malvedos, take a look at the superb Graham’s blog.

Video: foot treading grapes in the Douro

So here’s a film of foot treading at Quinta do Vesuvio, one of the Symington’s properties in the Douro. It’s amazing to think that many of the top Port wines are still made in this ancient fashion. Port grapes are loaded into the lagar after being picked during the day, and are then trodden for [...]

More pictures from the Douro

Quinta dos Canais

Just back from the Douro, on a trip visiting the Symington family’s properties. It’s always good to be in the Douro, and especially so at harvest time. It hasn’t been the easiest of growing seasons, but good weather over the last few weeks coupled with good weather over the next few (which [...]