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Quinta Do Vesuvio
If you think that Port wine was just for the Christmas cheeseboard then its time to think again. Fast making a comeback on both the dinner and investable wine tables, some Ports (or Portos, or Porto wines, its all the same thing) in particular need attention more than once a year. Quinta Do Vesuvio is one such wonder.
A port wine worth more than just our time
The quintessential of all Port wines, Quinta do Vesuvio has enjoyed a reputation as a leader for over a century. The estate itself dates back to 1565, but it wasn’t until the 19th century that it really began to grow wings. The reason was one woman - Dona Antónia Adelaide Ferreira. A formidable lady who took control of her family’s estates upon her widowhood aged just 33, Ferreirinha (her nickname given to her by her staff), devoted herself to the management of Quinta Do Vesuvio. Her meticulous dedication raised the bar on all Port wines and her visionary outlook has yet to be equalled. However, with no real inheritor to manage the estate with the same amount of passion as Ferreirinha, Quita Do Vesuvio began to slide. The estate was sold to the Symington family in 1989, whose long history (13-generations) in the Douro since the 17th century, seemed a natural fit to restore the once legendary Port back to perfection. The Symington family own 25 other quintas, making a total of 940-hectares in total (Quinta do Vesuvio is the largest of the properties, at 326 hectacres).
One of the loveliest estates in the Douro Valley
Located just 20 kilometres from Spain, Quinta do Vesuvio’s privileged location proves the adage that the higher up the valley you travel, the better the quality of the wine. The estate’s enormity and altitude rage (from 100 to 460 metres), along with the varying age of vine (from the 1970s to pre-WWII) means that Ports from Quinta do Vesuvio are rich, diverse and complex. Additionally, the Symingtons have kept things traditional, preserving the centuries-old method of treading the grapes in 1827 granite lagares. Today Vesuvio is one of the last Douro Valley properties to maintain this tradition.