Until October 2009, I had no idea there was so much more to wine in Portugal than Port: in fact I knew practically nothing about wine from Portugal except that I liked Port.
And then I was selected by Jo Diaz and Enoforum wine to attend the European Wine Bloggers Conference in Lisbon followed by travel throughout the Alentejo region to taste wine and experience the culture and countryside before returning to Lisbon where we saw a few sights and then flew home. During the conference I visited a cork forest and learned about the production of corks from tree to table, discovered how fabulous the cuisine of Portugal is, experienced the deep appreciation they have for the literary arts, explored castles and gazed on Roman aqueducts, and of course, developed a palate for wine from Portugal that is not Port.
And a whole lot more including a reasonable explanation for why we in the US are so unfamiliar with wine from Portugal: because they have always drank all of it themselves!
Until recently, the Portuguese drank up almost all of the wine they were able to produce. It is only recently that they have been able to make enough wine to export.
To state that the trip was transformative is an understatement.
So when it came time to pitch ideas for this year’s slate of Wine Pairing Weekend themes, I immediately thought of Portugal. While there, I was thrilled with the food — and I met chefs and came home with two cookbooks that I’ve been intimidated to do much with. But with help from Sue with her mad culinary skills? Yes!
Want to participate in the September 9 conversation about Portugal wine and food?
Wine Pairing Weekend is a group of bloggers who gather together once a month on the second Saturday to create food and wine pairings around a theme. We discuss the wine and food including our successes and failures as well as any tavel experiences during a twitter chat from 8-9am PST. David Crowley started the group in June 2014 and it’s been going strong ever since.
Join us as we investigate the wine and cuisine of Portugal this September. Choose red, white, or rose from any region of Portugal — even Port!– and pair it with a recipe found from Portugal or somewhere closer to home to pair with it.
To participate, comment on this post with your title and a link to your blog by Tuesday September 5 and I’ll include you in the preview post prior to the event.