Portuguese wine has managed to assert itself internationally for being a unique and differentiating proposal, based on the diversity and singularity of its grapes and its terroirs to which is associated a very consistent quality and excellent value for money.
Today, Portuguese wine international reputation is unquestionable. Portuguese wine exports also demonstrate this sector’s dynamism having registered a very favourable performance over the last years.
- 725 million euro of Portuguese wine exports in 2014 (Note: includes Port and Madeira wine);
- 11% the Food and Drink Manufacturing Industry GVA;
- 1,5%of the total national exports of goods is ensured by Portuguese wine;
- 66% is the representativeness of Portuguese wines within the export of Portuguese beverages, spirits and vinegar” products;
- 45% is the percentage of the exported wine production;
- 9th is Portugals position in the international wine trade ranking;
- 12th is Portugals position as a wine producing country worldwide;
Portuguese wine is the result of traditions introduced to the region by ancient civilizations, such as the Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Greeks, and mostly the Romans. Portugal started to export its wines to Rome during the Roman Empire. Modern exports developed with trade to England after the Methuen Treaty in 1703. From this commerce a wide variety of wines started to be grown in Portugal. And, in 1758, one of the first wine-producing region of the world, the Região Demarcada do Douro was created under the orientation of Marquis of Pombal, in the Douro Valley. Portugal has two wine producing regions protected by UNESCO as World Heritage: the Douro Valley Wine Region (Douro Vinhateiro) and Pico Island Wine Region (Ilha do Pico Vinhateira). Portugal has a big variety of local kinds, producing a very wide variety of different wines with distinctive personality.
Portugal has a large array of native varietals, producing an abundant variety of different wines. The wide array of Portuguese grape varietals contributes as significantly as the soil and climate to wine differentiation, producing distinctive wines from the Northern regions to Madeira Islands, and from Algarve to the Azores.
In Portugal only some grape varietals or castas are authorized or endorsed in the Demarcated regions, such as:
- Vinhos Verdes – White castas Alvarinho, Arinto (Pedernã), Avesso, Azal, Batoca, Loureiro, Trajadura; red castas Amaral, Borraçal, Alvarelhão, Espadeiro, Padeiro, Pedral, Rabo de Anho, Vinhão.
- Porto/Douro – Red castas Touriga Nacional, Tinta Amarela, Aragonez, Bastardo, Castelão, Cornifesto, Donzelinho Tinto, Malvasia Preta, Marufo, Rufete, Tinta Barroca, Tinta Francisca, Tinto Cão, Touriga Franca; white castas Arinto, Cercial, Donzelinho branco, Folgazão, Gouveio, Malvasia Fina, Moscatel Galego branco, Rabigato, Samarrinho, Semillon, Sercial, Roupeiro, Verdelho, Viosinho, Vital.
- Dão – Red castas Touriga Nacional, Alfrocheiro, Aragonez, Jaen e Rufete; White castas Encruzado, Bical, Cercial, Malvasia Fina, Verdelho.
- Bairrada – Red casts Baga, Alfrocheiro, Camarate, Castelão, Jaen, Touriga Nacional, Aragonez; white castas Maria Gomes, Arinto, Bical, Cercial, Rabo de Ovelha, Verdelho.
- Bucelas – White castas Arinto, Sercial e Rabo de Ovelha.
- Colares – Red casta Ramisco; White casta Malvasia
- Carcavelos – Red castas Castelão and Preto Martinho; White castas Galego Dourado, Ratinho, Arinto.
- Setúbal – Red casta Moscatel Roxo; white casta Moscatel de Setúbal.
- Alentejo – Red castas Alfrocheiro, Aragonez, Periquita1, Tinta Caiada, Trincadeira, Alicante Bouschet, Moreto; White castas Antão Vaz, Arinto, Fernão Pires, Rabo de Ovelha, Roupeiro
- Algarve – Red castas Negra Mole, Trincadeira, Alicante Bouschet, Aragonez, Periquita; White castas Arinto, Roupeiro, Manteúdo, Moscatel Graúdo, Perrum, Rabo de Ovelha.
- Madeira – Red castas Bastardo, Tinta, Malvasia Cândida Roxa, Verdelho Tinto e Tinta Negra; white castas Sercial, Malvasia Fina (Boal), Malvasia Cândida, Folgasão (Terrantez), Verdelho.
- Tejo – Red castas Baga, Camarate, Castelão, Trincadeira, Tinta-Miúda, Preto-Martinho, Aragonez, Touriga-Franca, Touriga-Nacional, Alfrocheiro, Caladoc, Esgana-Cão-Tinto, Jaen, Petit Verdot, Tinta-Barroca, Tinta-Caiada, Tinto-Cão, Merlot, Cabernet-Sauvignon, Bastardo, Pinot noir, Alicante-Bouschet, Grand noir, Moreto, Syrah; white castas Arinto, Fernão Pires, Rabo-de-Ovelha, Tália, Trincadeira-das-Pratas, Vital, Verdelho, Tamarez, Cerceal branco, Alicante branco, Chardonnay, Malvasia-Rei, Pinot blanc, Sauvignon, Alvarinho, Moscatel-Graúdo, Síria, Viosinho.