The largest gathering of Portuguese wineries in 20 years in Vancouver took place on Thursday, May 8 at the Vancouver Art Gallery (750 Hornby Street) for an exclusive trade and media-only tasting event. This exceptional variety of the wines of Portugal were presented by more than 35 vintners who came especially to Vancouver, in a unique opportunity to taste the grapes and appellations that are hallmarks to this extraordinary region.
“The great wines of Portugal showcase the truth within their terror. In the wines from each region, you can taste the mountains, the ocean air, and of course, the passion of the talented winemakers. The wines have reached a high level of quality in the last few years, it’s hard not to fall in love. We are pleased that the people of Vancouver were able to appreciate the diversity and flavours of Portuguese wines. Saude, Vancouver!” says Nuno Vale, chief marketing officer, ViniPortugal.
The capacity crowd, which included A-list trade and media guests, enjoyed an educational seminar from leading wine expert Treve Ring (EAT magazine, Wine Align) followed by a festival-style tasting that included more than 300 wines from across this historic region.
With an aim to showcase how well the wines of Portugal pair with local cuisine, Bon Vivant Group’s Dino Renaerts presented various dishes, which included leitao a bairrada, saffron croquettes, mussels gratinee, enchidos & queijo, and a selection of charcuterie, olives and cheese.
“The Portuguese category is a small one here in B.C., but it is certainly on the rise as consumers are looking to try new wines that showcase great flavours, while offering excellent value. The wines of Portugal certainly do that,” says Barbara Philip, MW, portfolio manager, BC Liquor Distribution Branch. “From the northern wines of Vinho Verde, Bairrada, Dao, and the Douro to the emerging southern wines of the Alentejo and the Tejo, Portugal shows incredible diversity. Plus, the wines pair so well with our local cuisine, including fresh seafood, like Spot Prawns, which are just coming into season.”
About Wines of Portugal
The 2010 launch of Vinhos de Portugal (Wines of Portugal) marketing drive is the result of a collaborative exercise by the whole of the Portuguese wine industry and its representatives – a new, dynamic take on wine promotion. Up on the banner of this united “Portuguese brand” is a new logo. The eye-catching “P” for Portugal symbolizes the very essence of Portugal’s contemporary wines: a bright, modern image filled with individual, colourful, creative icons plucked from the vineyard, cellar, and the wine-drinking moment. Across Portugal’s immense variety of terriors, using a plethora of unique grape varieties and blends, the Portuguese grape-growers and winemakers offer a creative, skilled, technical, yet also artistic approach. The wines they make are unique and distinctive. Difference is what Portuguese wines are all about.
Different terriors and climatic conditions, different grapes and ultimately, wines of different character and flavours. The more you get to know them, the more those differences fascinate and draw you in – until finally, it’s love, pure and simple. Wines of Portugal brand is managed by ViniPortugal, a trade association whose aim is to set Portugal as the next hot spot in the international wine scene. Wines of Portugal provides strategic support to the Portuguese wine sector, brining together organizations representing trade, production, cooperative wineries, distillers, farmers, demarcated regions, and government bodies.