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The Portuguese wine-growing region is named after the approximately 900 km long river on whose very steep slopes with extreme inclination the vineyards are located. The river rises in the Spanish province of Soria (Castile-León), flows through northern Spain as the "Duero" and then through northern Portugal as the "Douro", until it finally flows into the Atlantic Ocean near the city of Porto. The river forms the Portuguese-Spanish border for over 100 km. For more than 100 km, the river forms the Portuguese-Spanish border; after that, the port wine region extends just as long in Portugal. The Douro has cut a deep valley into the slate-granite mountains on whose slopes the port wine grows. As early as 1756, under the Prime Minister Marquês de Pombal (1699-1782), in order to protect the authenticity of Port wine, Douro was defined for the first time in its boundaries as one of the oldest origin-protected wine regions in the world and later classified as a DOC area. However, "Vinho do Porto" or "Porto" is not named after its Douro region of origin, but after the port city from where it is shipped. For over two centuries, this applied exclusively to port wine. It was not until 1979 that this was extended to unfortified wines. The success of the famous red wine "Barca Velha" from the Ferreira winery, but later also the "Redomo" from Niepoort and the "Grande Escolha" from Quinta do Côtto contributed to this.

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Dr. Christa Hanten

For my many years of work as an editor with a wine and culinary focus, I always like to inform myself about special questions at Wine lexicon. Spontaneous reading and following links often leads to exciting discoveries in the wide world of wine.

Dr. Christa Hanten
Fachjournalistin, Lektorin und Verkosterin, Wien

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