Port Wine.

Portugal is, of course, the home of Port Wine, or simply Port as it is commonly known. What is less well known is that port wine was invented by the English and explains why all the famous port companies have English names - Grahams, Sandemans, Taylors etc, etc,. During the 18th Century England was almost constantly at war with both France and Spain so wines from both these countries was unobtainable. England, with it’s longstanding treaty with Portugal started importing Portuguese wines. Unfortunately the voyage from Portugal to England was long and the wines were spoiling before arrival so the importers started adding brandy to the wine to extend the wine life and Port was the result. At least that is what we were told when we visited Taylors Port Lodge in Porto. Is it true? I don’t know but it’s a good story.

While we are in Portugal we drink quite a lot of port. If we have a paella or a Fideuá we will drink white port with it as opposed to an ordinary wine, similarly if we have a cheese and biscuit meal we will accompany that with a ruby port. With the price of a bottle of port as low as €3.50 (£2.78) it’s affordable although for a good vintage port a pocket far deeper than ours is essential.

We do know that the added brandy is actually a neutral grape spirit known as aguardente but Port is a complicated subject so for further information click HERE

Last updated Sunday 21st June 2015                                                                                © S W Ghost 2015