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How is Porto made?

How is Porto made?

Nov 7, 2018

Poroto (or Vinho do Porto) is one of the most popular drinks in the world among wine connoisseurs. The term Porto refers to Portuguese fortified wine which is manufactured exclusively in the Douro Valley of Portugal. Just like champagne and Tequila, the drink gets its name after a specific geographical area.

Fortified wine is produced in many countries outside Portugal as well. But according to the European Union’s Protected Designation of Origin rules, only the Portuguese wines produced in Douro Valley can carry the name Porto or Port.

 Production of a port wine follows a generic process, although each distillery has its own special recipe to achieve its flagship taste, texture and smell.

Porto is prepared by fermenting grapes grown in a specific region. It is then fortified by the addition of aguardente, a neutral grape spirit that stops further fermentation and helps retain some sugar content in the wine. It also boosts the alcohol content of the wine. The wine is then aged in barrels in cellars. After the ageing, Porto is bottled. The name came about due to the seaport called Porto found at the mouth of the Douro Valley during the 17th century.

 Owing to the history, Douro was converted into a protected zone in 1756 through an official appellation.

 Everything in the production of the Porto is followed as per the traditional standards, starting from the variety of grapes harvested up to the ageing. While some of the components have got the benefit of technological advancements, like bottling, tradition and proven formula is at the heart of winemaking in this region.

 Port Wine made in other countries do not necessarily follow the “Porto” traditions. There is a decline in sales of Porto in recent years, mainly attributed to the increase of other alcoholic drinks and presence of other affordable ports.

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