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3 vineyards worth toasting in the Algarve

Posted by Katy Peck on 2 July 2019
Related property: Rocha Brava
3 vineyards worth toasting in the Algarve

There’s nothing like enjoying a glass of cool, crisp white wine under the Portuguese sun, especially when admiring some fantastic scenery like that on offer at Rocha Brava. The Algarve has a long history of producing some delicious wines, with the first vines planted around 2000BC and the Phoenicians, Greeks and Romans all developing the industry across Portugal… it’s no wonder that this beautiful part of the world is home to so many wineries, both young and old!

Part of the reason this area has such a good history of wine production is the fantastic weather and environment. The Algarve’s south-facing shores, shelter from the chilly northerly winds, sunny climate, sandy clay soil and proximity to the ocean all combine to create the perfect conditions for viniculture, allowing vines and grapes to thrive. There’s a wide selection of both red and white grapes grown throughout the area, with some of the most popular being Negra Mole and Castelão (red) and Síria, Malvasia Fina and Manteúdo (white).

For wine aficionados enjoying a break at Rocha Brava, there are some fantastic opportunities to learn more about the vineyards and wines across the region. These beautiful wineries are all within 40 minutes of the property, making them a fantastic choice for a day trip away from the beaches or towns.

Quinta do Francês – 30 minutes via A22

This family estate is made up of 8 hectares of vineyards in the hills of the Odelouca River Valley. They grow mainly red grapes - the 4 different varieties (Trincadeira, Aragonês, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah) were planted in 2002, with production starting in 2008.

This vineyard is in a superb location, where the hot and dry climate combined with the cool breezes from the Atlantic help the grapes to grow and ripen. The poor clay soil also limits the water intake, which causes the grapes to concentrate in just the right way to create some fantastic flavours. The Quinta do Francês winery produces several wines, but it is most known for two; “Quinta do Francês" and "Odelouca".

The vineyard is open to visitors throughout the year, although it is closed on weekends during winter and on Sundays in the summer. Guided tours take place every day and can be enjoyed in English, Portugese and French. You will be treated to a presentation on the history of the winery, a visit to the winery, basement and oak barrels area, before finishing by tasting 3 of the wines themselves. You can also enjoy some tapas during your visit, or pop into the delightful and well-stocked wine shop. Tours start at 7,50€ per person and can be booked in advance here.

Adega do Cantor – 30 minutes via N125

The Adego do Cantor (or Winery of the Singer) is located in Guia, a few kilometres northwest of Albufeira. By combining traditional and modern techniques, they produce several award-winning wines, including a selection of sparkling wines.

Adego do Cantor is supplied by three separate vineyards - Quinta do Miradouro, Vale do Sobreiro and Vale do Sobreiro (which actually belongs to Sir Cliff Richard!). Planted between 1997 and 2004, these vineyards grow a variety of grapes and are mostly operated by hand, including the picking and processing of the fruit. The vineyards are also very sustainable, using only the gentlest agricultural products to try and prevent vineyard diseases, rather than having to aggressively treat them once they occur. This has led to healthy, beautiful vines which are a pleasure to stroll through, especially when teamed with the spectacular views.

Visitors are welcome to come and enjoy an exclusive tour of the vineyards and winery, as well as a tutored tasting and visit to the cellar shop. There are several tours throughout the day, each costing 10€ on an appointment only basis. You can book in advance by getting in touch or through the website. It has been said that Adega do Cantor can be quite difficult to find, tucked away off the beaten track, so give yourself plenty of time for the journey.

Monte da Casteleja – 35 minutes via A22

Monte da Casteleja produces fantastic wines through a combination of innovate new technology and traditional techniques, such as hand harvesting, feet treading and aging in wooden vats. The first grapes were planted here in 2000, with the first bottles of wine being produced in 2004. Today, Monte da Casteleja prides itself on its organic farming method, and has been certified in organic production since 2008.

The winery produces a selection of four red, white and rosê wines, which are available throughout Portugal. Whether you like a rich red or a refreshing white, these wines are perfect when paired with traditional Algarvian dishes.

There is a selection of tours available to visitors, from a simple tasting of two wines to a guided tour from the winegrower himself and a chance to try all four wines, along with a selection of tapas. All tours have limited spaces and must be booked in advance. For times and to secure your place, visit their website.  

After your day exploring the vineyards, sipping on wine and relaxing in the sun, make sure to pick up a bottle of your favourite to take back to your beautiful Rocha Brava holiday property. Whether you pour yourself a glass on the balcony or terrace, it’s the perfect place to sit back and relax after a long day. 

To learn more about Rocha Brava, as well as our 30+ other properties, make sure to get in touch today.

Katy Peck

Katy Peck

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