One of the reasons Portugal’s southernmost region is the ideal spot for great wine-growing is the sunny weather it enjoys for much of the year. The Algarve not only attracts happy holidaymakers seeking sunshine, it is a breeding ground for rich vines that produce high-quality grapes.
Despite the close proximity to the Alentejo region which can get much cooler at times, the Algarve is protected from harsher weather conditions by a group of mountains that run along the Spanish border and the Atlantic coast. This gives this whole area a very Mediterranean flavour.
The vines grow in a variety of soils including clay, limestone, sandstone and even some areas of schist rock. The Algarve has a long heritage as a wine-making region with four towns well-known for producing great tasting wines; Lagos, Lagoa, Tavira and Portimão.
Traditionally the main white grapes include Fina, Síria, Arinto, Malvasia Fina and Manteúdo and red varieties such as Castelão and Negra Mole. Over recent years new wine-making estates have been taking advantage of the Algarve’s offerings and new estates are enjoying success here.