Acclaimed Portuguese author and Noble prize winner José Saramago expressed his passion for the Dão region describing it as a place with ‘grandeur’. Stepped in a wine-making history that goes back an entire millennium, Dão is another fine example of Portugal’s dedication to producing excellent quality red and white wines.
Precious vines are scattered around this region in small holdings amongst pine forests as well as growing in the high altitudes around the Serra da Estrela, which peaks at just under 2,000 metres and is the highest point in mainland Portugal. This mountainous area can get very cool at night which means grapes ripe slowly, leading to wine with a rich aroma and good acidity.
There are more than 70 million vines dotted around the region and local legend says that the star red grape, Touriga Nacional, originates from the Dão village of Tourigo. Today, it is widely regarded as one of the best red grape varieties in the country. As far as white grapes are concerned, the premium variety here is Encruzado with its light and fresh flavour.
The typical wine from Dão is the red one, of ruby colour, round, spirituous, of delicate scent and velvety taste. The best known are: Caves Aliança, Caves S. João, J. Maria da Fonseca and Caves Primavera.
Breathe in the pure air of Dão, admire the verdant vegetation, explore the traditional villages nestled deep in the valleys and walk in the footsteps of the monks who once farmed this land centuries ago.