In the northwest of Portugal lies the Vinho Verde region, the birthplace of the famous Alvarinho variety. Unique in the world, the young wines are acidulated, light and fresh, with average alcohol content and good digestive properties. They are easy-to-drink, fruity wines that work great as aperitifs or to accompany light fish dishes, seafood, white meats, salads and other meals.
The production of Vinho Verde wines is characterized by granitic soils, the Atlantic breeze (the penetration of sea winds is facilitated by the orientation of the valleys of the main rivers) and the high levels of precipitation. In the Vinho Verde region, the wines occupy 21,000 hectares, 15% of the Portuguese wine-growing area. Naturally light and fresh, Vinho Verde goes perfectly with salads and seafood dishes that are sure to delight in the fishing villages on the northern coast of Portugal.
To learn more about this region, the Vinho Verde Route will allow you to discover the main Vinho Verde producing locations, through three separate tours: the first invites you to visit “Three Charming Cities”- Guimarães, Braga and Amarante; the second, “From Cávado to Lima”, takes you to Barcelos, Viana do Castelo, Ponte de Lima, Ponte da Barca and Arcos de Valdevez, towns on the banks of the Lima river; and finally, “From the Coast to the Mountains” is a tour on the border of Galicia, where you will discover the charms of Caminha, Vila Nova de Cerveira, Valença and Monção, the greatly appreciated capital of Alvarinho.
If you select the first tour for the month of May, do not miss the opportunity to take part in the Vinho Verde FEST, which shall take place between May 15th-17th in Braga’s Exhibition Park. This event, though grounded in promoting Vinho Verde, will simultaneously promote Gastronomy and Tourism. Every day, visitors can partake in wine and food tasting, cooking shows with prestigious chefs, DJ entertainment and many other activities intended to celebrate Vinho Verde, Gastronomy and Tourism. This edition of the Vinho Verde FEST includes the 2nd Vinho Verde-InvestBraga Compeitition, workshops and training sessions, particularly the Wine Course. In the area of Gastronomy, we recommend the Gourmet Lounge where visitors will find oils, chocolates, jams, preserves, traditional Portuguese sweets, cheeses, etc.
You can also visit the wine producing farms and wineries, sample the region’s cuisine, participate in activities and tour routes of cultural interest. The demarcated Vinho Verde region awaits you for a unique and memorable experience, starting with the hospitality of the region’s people that affects everyone.
But the Vinho Verde Route has much more to offer than the pleasure of this unique, elegant, aromatic and refreshing product that is Vinho Verde. Awaiting you are the Heritage Sites, a rich set of monuments from various eras, a unique landscape, with beaches and mountains, valleys and rivers, and cuisine with unique flavors that yield to the Vinho Verde. There are many reasons to visit the region.
Enjoy the beaches on the coastline of the Minho river, of the mountains that separate the North Atlantic from the North Interior. Enjoy the region’s unique landscape and the rich vegetation where green is the dominate color, visit Heritage Sites with vibrant cultures and a rich set of monuments from various eras.
At the table, enjoy cod, lamprey, trout and shad, cooked in various ways and always present in the Minho kitchen. If you enjoy meat dishes, try the famous Sarrabulho (stew made with pork or lamb and blood) with rojões (fried pork loin) and end the meal with formigos (sweet sugary oatmeal) or rabanadas (French toast). And it is no surprise that to accompany the meal, you can choose an Alvarinho variety wine.
Come to the North of Portugal to discover the region’s best products and, clearly, explore the cities, towns and villages steeped in history. Contact us for more information and a detailed plan to make the most of the Vinho Verde Route.