Finally we got time to do a bit of sightseeing
today and spent the day in Porto.
We decided that it would be rude to visit
the area and not to investigate the local products so we spent a most enjoyable
afternoon visiting one or two of the local Port houses.
Our first visit was to Grahams Port house (who also
produce Port under the Dows and Warres brand names). We learnt all about the
growing of the grapes in the Douro region of Portugal, the harvesting and
pressing of the grapes much of which is still done by hand, the
fermentation process and finally the storage and bottling. It is this last
stage which results in the diferent types of Port, i.e. Tawny or Ruby, Vintage
(where it continues to improve in the bottle) or late bottled. We then got
to have a taster each of some white, tawny and ruby ports and finally
a taster of one of the vintage ports. We thoroughly enjoyed the tour and the
Havng completed one tour, we felt it would be
prudent to try one of the other port houses - y'know, just for comparison.... So
we visited Ferreira..... then we visited Offley.... and finally Sandeman's. What
a happy afternoon we had!! Anyway, the outcome of our purely scientific
investigations is that Grahams is still the best!
We hope to spend another couple of days here, then
move further South toward Nazare.