Flashcards in C44 - Port Deck (106)
Where are the activities of the Port industry?
Divided between the twin coastal cities of Porto and Vila Nova de Gaia and the vineyard area that starts 70 kilometres upstream of these towns
These are on opposite sides of the mouth of the river Douro
How is the vineyard area for Port divided?
Into three sub-regions:
Which area of Port produces the lightest wines?
What is the reputation of Cima Corgo?
This is where the greatest number of top vineyards are found
What is the reputation of Douro Superior?
Though sparsely planted, it is still renowned as a source of top quality wine
What is the climate in the Port area? What influences it specifically in this region?
Warm continental climate
Shielded from the Atlantic by the Serra do Marão
What is the coolest and wettest of the sub-regions of Port?
Baixo Corgo in the west
How does vineyard climate vary as vineyards go east/inland for Port?
They become progressively hotter and dryer
What are the biggest spring threats a grower has to face for Port?
Frost and heavy downpours, which may disrupt flowering as well as harvest
What are the viticultural difficulties for Port in summer?
Daytime temperatures can be very high and rainfall (throughout the growing season) can be very low
What makes viticulture possible for Port and why?
Schist bedrock which fractures vertically allowing the vines' roots to access deep water reserves that are built up by the winter rains
Where are the vineyards in the Baixo and Cima Corgo?
On the very tall and very steep slopes that rise up from the banks of the Douro and its tributaries
What is the topography in the Baixo and Cima Corgo like?
Give two examples of how growers may take advantage of the hilly topography available to them in the Cima and Baixo Corgo?
They may take advantage of altitude for its associated variability in temperature
They may use more northerly facing vineyard sites to avoid the full force of the sun
Why is topography a potential challenge for a Port producer?
Managing vineyard on such steep sites can be an enormous and costly challenge
What are socalcos?
The name for the terraces which were supported by stone walls, on which vineyards were traditionally planted in Portugal (for Port specifically)
What are the big disadvantage of socalcos?
Each terrace can only support a few rows of vines
No mechanisation is possible
The walls are expensive to maintain
Describe usage of socalcos in Portugal
Impractical but still widely used
What are patamares?
A more modern style of vine terrace in Port to allow some mechanisation
No retaining walls
Each terrace is wide enough to allow tractor access
What is vinha ao alto?
An interfaced system for Port where the angle of the slope is low
Vines are planted up and down the slope and accessed by roads cutting across the slopes from where machinery is operated by winches
What are the disadvantages to patamares and vinha ao alto?
They are both prone to erosion, particularly vinha ao alto, which is not viable on the steepest slopes
What is the general style of grapes from the Douro?
Thick skinned, high tannins with black fruits and floral aromas
What are the five grape varieties which are preferred in premium Port production?
Describe fermentation of Port grapes
Fermentation stopped by fortification once alcohol reaches 5-9% abv to create a sweet wine
How long does fermentation typically last for a port wine?
24 to 36 hours
What is the challenge posed by the shorter fermentation for Port wines?
Normal extraction techniques aren't vigorous enough
What are the three methods of extraction used for Port wines?
Piston plungers and robotic lagares
Describe the view in Port production, of foot treading as an extraction method
It's the benchmark against which all other methods are judged
What happens during foot treading in Port?
Large teams of workers tread the grapes for three to four hours in shallow granite troughs/lagares