Led by a wine producer or chef, this Porto Wine Tour and Tasting provides an in-depth tutorial in wine history, technique, and appreciation. Porto is the spot to understand wine history given its location 60km away from the most well-known wine region in Portugal, the Douro Valley. Our 3-hour Porto Wine Tour and Tasting introduces the basics of Portuguese wines, from Port wine to Vinho Verde (Green Wine) and even the country’s lesser known appellations. Over a few glasses of wine, we will discuss the wine-making process and the evolution of wine in Portugal, as well as food and wine pairings, current trends, and tasting techniques to help you continue your appreciation at home or abroad. We’ll visit two or three characteristic wine bars or wine stores, where locals congregate to imbibe, snack, and socialize (where we’ll join in the fun too).
Porto Wine Tour and Tasting
We'll begin our Porto Wine Tour in the center of Porto at a small, authentic wine bar. Here, we’ll kick things off with a glass of wine and a discussion of Portugal’s history of wine production, which dates from 200 BC. We may learn about the art of tasting, and we'll explore the history of wine in Portugal with a specific emphasis on the Douro Valley (where Porto is located). We’ll learn about the grape varieties common to the Douro region, the process of fortified or unfortified wines and how the valley handles the sub-regional temperatures. We may pair another glass of wine with a Portuguese delicacy such as a small pie or some cheese. This is a fitting setting to showcase the diverse styles of Portuguese wine: these tastings will serve to calibrate your palate and introduce the rest of the tasting tour.
We’ll move on our Porto Wine Tour to another local establishment, where we'll settle in to taste from a couple of menu options of our choice. Surrounded by organic produce from regions throughout Portugal, our docent will use this location to talk about Portuguese gastronomic traditions linked to wine. We may try a Vinho Verde (Green Wine) washed down with some Portuguese charcuterie, cheeses, and olives. Or, perhaps we’ll decide to savor some tawny Port wine while tasting some Portuguese sardines and homemade bread. Our docent will use this opportunity to discuss the thinking behind pairing food and wine and the typical dishes that find themselves linked to certain wine varieties.
For a more focused examination into Portuguese cuisine we recommend our Porto Food Tour
Just Around the River Bend
We’ll finish up with a farewell wine at a location near the Douro River, down at Cais da Estiva. As we sip on a wine carefully selected by our docent, we’ll talk about the importance of this main artery, which cuts in deep twists and turns through some of the most rugged and hilly wine regions of Portugal. We may touch upon the transportation methods and the Port wine houses as we gaze across the river to Vila Nova de Gaia. The setting adds a symbolic ending to our Porto Wine Tour as we finish our glass of Portuguese sweet nectar, reflecting on the history and economic adventures of this charming region.
For a more in depth look into Vila Nova de Gaia we can arrange Custom Porto Boat Tour
which explores this particular city and includes more Port tasting. Have more time? We can also do custom wine excursions to the Douro Valley.
We will emerge with a greater understanding of the history of the region in relation to wine along with our taste buds awakened from tasting a sample of Portuguese local snacks. We will leave our walk with new gustative knowledge on Portuguese wines that we can take home with us and put to good use when buying or drinking Portuguese wine anywhere in the world. The emphasis is on learning to enjoy Portuguese wines and observing, through tasting, how they reflect and encapsulate Portuguese culture itself.
What is the legal drinking age in Portugal?
The legal drinking age is 18.
Is this tour wheelchair accessible?
Some of the shops we visit are small and many will have a step up to access them. The general route may include small streets with narrow sidewalks; please contact us if you have any questions regarding accessibility. We are also happy to design a private, customized tour for visitors with mobility concerns.