The stunning wine history in the Douro

The stunning wine history in the Douro

Get to know a little more in detail about the events that marked this fascinating story.

Photo: Arte Do Vinho

First of all, the stunning wine history in the Douro dates back to Roman times.

In addition, the traces of wine production in the Douro date back to the time of the Roman occupation of this territory, in the 1st century.

For example, the fortified village of Fonte do Milho, in the municipality of Peso da Régua, is representative of this historical fact.

Thus, in a rustic dependency of this village, a wine press was discovered.

In other words, this historic event was the starting point of the winemaking epic in the Alto Douro Vinhateiro, now proudly a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Photo: Folclore.PT


From Muslim pause to Cistercian writing

Firstly, the Douro wine history had, between the Roman period (5th century) and the time of the Marquis of Pombal (18th century), many peculiarities.

In addition, due to the Muslim invasion, there was an almost total stop in wine production, as the Qur’an forbids the consumption of alcoholic beverages.

From the year 1142, the Cistercian monks planted the first vineyards in the Douro, on a farm near the mouth of the Varosa, now known as Casa dos Varais.

In this sense, it was the first farm in the Douro to produce the so-called “smelling wine of Lamego”, the well-known Port Wine, for been exported from the city of Porto since the reign of D. Dinis (1279-1325).


Pombaline influence: Real Companhia Velha and a timeless empire

With the natural evolution of transport, storage, and production conditions, new ideas and needs emerged.

Then, on September 10, 1756, the Marquis of Pombal, prime minister of King José I, created the Real Companhia Velha.

As a result, the first demarcated wine region in Portugal was established, with the installation of the famous 335 Pombaline landmarks.

Thus, the Real Companhia held, until 1865, the exclusivity of the production and distribution of wines in the region.

A unique company, its history is intertwined with that of Porto Wine, owning several estates in the Douro region.

Photo: Wine Tourism Portugal

Our days: an enchanting wine universe

Beforehand, anyone who has the opportunity to travel through the Douro Demarcated Region, villages, and wine-growing villages, will be guaranteed a rewarding experience.

For example, the Alto Douro Wine Region, a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2001, is symptomatic of the power that the Douro region has.

Just as the variety is immense, the quality and richness of its wines are even greater.

This and many reasons make the Douro a highly sought-after region by tourists from all over the world.

Finally, a toast to the stunning wine history in the Douro!

Photo: Clube de Vinhos Portugueses


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