DOC area (also Collares) on the Atlantic coast of Portugal north of the capital Lisbon in the Lisboa region. The vineyards between the small town of Sintra (the palace standing here was the summer residence of the Portuguese kings) and the Atlantic Ocean are constantly buffeted by Atlantic winds and lie on sandy soil up to three metres deep, which is why the area was spared from phylloxera in the 19th century (see also under Sand Wine). The climate is characterised by extreme fluctuations with lots of rain and cool temperatures. The predominant red grape variety, Ramisco, is cultivated ungrafted and has to bore its roots into the deep underlying clay layer. Planting new vineyards is very difficult because the thick layer of sand has to be dug away to get to the clay. From the sandiest soil, a dark and tannin-rich red wine is made from at least 80% Ramisco, which is aged in wooden barrels for up to three years. The wine, which can be stored for decades, should at best only be opened after 10 to 15 years. A lower quality comes from the firmer soil a little further from the coast, this is mostly sold in barrels for blending purposes. From mainly the varieties Malvasia de Colares, as well as Arinto, Galego Dourado and Jampal, a white variety is pressed in small quantities. The best known of the few producers is Antonio Bernardino Paulo da Silva.
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