Quinta das Carrafouchas

Quinta das Carrafouchas (winemaker ) is located near Loures, a few miles away from the Portuguese capital . The House of Carrafouchas was built in century XVIII, purchased by the Marquis of Valada Joaquim Franco Cannas. The house belongs to the same family till now. 

There are three distinct elements on his construction, such as chapel, residence and the wall of the courtyard, enclosed by an armored hatch. Very related with Portuguese architecture, the house has the predominance given to interior decoration, in which the Chapel has a major importance.

Dedicated to Our Lady of Mount Carmel is associated also with gilded carving, fresh red and golden marble, blue and white tiles, besides many other details.

Quinta das Carrafouchas

Quinta das Carrafouchas Wine Production

Inspired by traditions and the traditional way of making wine, associated to the passion work of its owners, show us the art of treating vineyards and making wine. Licensed in 1932, only after 1954 Quinta das Carrafouchas started to sell white wine in bulk.

Later, the owners started to implement new grape varieties and new ways of conducting and managing the vineyard. They choose the major Portuguese grape variety Touriga Nacional, Tinta Roriz and Arinto ( popular in Lisbon wine Region). When necessary, the vineyard is watered with the purest mine water of the property. 

Quality of Wine Production

To optimize quality at Quinta das Carrafouchas, the harvest is done manually and deposited in boxes of 20 kgs ( 44,09 lbs ). With this process guarantee´s the perfect transportation from the vineyard to the winery. Another important idea with this winemaker is that they launch only new wines when the maximum quality is achieved, which means when a list of criteria of several factors are combined into perfection.

 

Wine Products

The winemaker has 3 main wines that you will be able to enjoy during a visit on a wine tasting. We have our favorite, however each person have their preference. What would be yours?

Quinta das Carrafouchas, Red Wine

Quinta das Carrafouchas (White Wine)

As mentioned before, Quinta das Carrafouchas produces white wine. It is a single grape variety (Monocasta in Portuguese) called Arinto , typical from the Lisbon wine region. Launched in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012.

Vinification with the grapes destemmed after 6 hours of skin contact, fermented in stainless steel vat at temperature controlled (14ºC). 30% of the wine was then aged in 225L French oak barrels used. Alcoholic Content by Volume: : 13%

Quinta das Carrafouchas, Red Wine

Quinta das Carrafouchas (Red Wine)

Getting the very best of Atlantic climate and sandy soils. Quinta das Carrafouchas is a blend with 50% of Touriga Nacional and 50% of Aragonês.

The grapes destemmed after four days of cold maceration. The fermentation process is in stainless steel at 26ºC during 6 days. After malolactic fermentation, 50% aged for six months in French Oak Barrels and American oak Barrels used.

Alcoholic Content by Volume: 13.5%


Quinta das Carrafouchas, Çaloyo

Çaloyo

Çaloyo is the Arabic word that means saloio in Portuguese.. A region that, since time immemorial, has supplied the capital with all kinds of agricultural products (olive oil, milk, cheese, meat, wine, vegetables, fruit, etc.).

Formerly in the countryside of the Saloia Region. Saloias were sheep grazed, being here their birthplace. With the advance of the construction to Lisbon surroundings and other issues, it was almost extinct this type of sheeps.

Formerly in the countryside of the Saloia Region. Saloias were sheep grazed, being here their birthplace. With the advance of the construction to Lisbon surroundings and other issues, it was almost extinct this type of sheeps. The wine name is also a tribute to the Sheeo Saloia breed and to all people involved over the years for their protection as a breed. Two most recent launches was Çaloyo 2009 and Çaloyo 2012 ( available in 750ml bottle and Magnum 1,5L ). Alcoholic Content by Volume : 14%

Enjoy the Portuguese wine and food on your next trip to our country. Congrats Quinta das Carrafouchas

Algarve

Travelers as vines love Algarve due to the mediterranean climate . Most of the has a wonderful average temperature, never too cold in the Winter or never too hot in the Summer. People can enjoy a good glass of wine, some Portuguese petiscos or an excellent meal with wine pairing. More than 3000 hours of sunshine every year is amazing.

 The border between Algarve and Alentejo wine region is more or less 20 to 30 miles from the coastline, depending on the geography. You will find a beautiful chain of mountains passing by on the regional roads or in the highway. Looking to the world map, you will find the borders of Spain on the East, Atlantic Ocean ( West and South ).

 In Algarve, the soils can be different according to the areas. You will find sandy soils, clay, occasionally shallow over rock, schist or even limestone. They can be a challenge for wine estates, since on the same property they will find differences, besides the wind and Mediterranean climate

Algarve has their traditional wines based on specific white and red varieties and it is common to find blends, as in all country. Mainly white grapes are : Arinto ( also popular in Lisbon Wine region ), Malvasia Fina, Manteúdo and Síria. , Favorite red grapes are : Castelão and Negra Mole. However you will find also other grape varieties, especially on new wine estates of regional wines. Grapes such as Syrah, Aragonez, Cabernet Sauvignon, Trincadeira, Alvarinho, Viognier and of course Touriga Nacional .

Brief History of Civilizations in Algarve

Back to the Past, you will find human presence since Paleolithic and Neolithic periods, specially in Lagos, Alcoutim and Vila do Bispo. The presence in general is due to the establishment of farmers and fishermans along the coastline .For example, Lagos which is famous today by his amazing gastronomy based on fish, was called Cyneticum. Later, Phoenicians established trading posts . Carthaginians founded Portus Hanibalis , which we know today as Portimão 550 BC).

Along centuries, civilizations’ presence changed. You will find vestiges of Roman Era ( as in Alentejo history ). Medieval period with Visigods and Moors. Today, it is an international community with people from all over the World, specially from Europe. Some of them retired in Algarve through the acquisition of properties, others just spending wonderful time during vacations. People love the climate, gastronomy and the way Portuguese receive foreigners.

Algarve Gastronomy
Photo: VisitAlgarve

Algarve is divided into 16 municipalities. They have mainly in common gastronomy, history, coastline (in most of the municipalities) and tourism. Inland activities or water activities, you will find in several cities to enjoy, from boat trips to relief your senses in private experiences.


It is a region with 4996 km2 and a population of 451.000 people spread. You will also find a large community of English, Irish, Germans and Frenchs. There is a highest percentage of foreigners retired. In fact, an American-based study in 2016 concluded that Algarve is the World´s best place to retire. There are several factors for this, besides the 30 golf courses of the region, which is one of the favorite sports for foreigners in Portugal.

Niepoort Vintage Port 2017 is a winner!

Niepoort Vintage Port 2017 won at the BWW – Best Wine of the World Competition. BWW – Best Wine of the World Competition is one of the major wine competition in the world. Measured by the number of wines, number of consumers involved and judges taking part.

A total of 204675 wines received for the competition and more than 3 million votes. There were 190.000 wine professionals and wine lovers from more than 115 countries during the three months of voting period. The 100 top wines were divided in six different categories for the final process, which was organized in December 2020. 

Niepoort Vintage 2017, Douro, Portugal

Six main categories:

– Red wine
– White wine
– Rose wine
– Sparkling wine
– Fortified wine
– Champagne

The best wines were also awarded according to the price level and country categories. During the finals process, wines were evaluated and ranked two different times as blind tasting. The jury ( professionals selected by judges from over 11000 professionals were wine writers, bloggers, wine dealers, among other professionails. 

They gave good news for Portugal, Douro and elected Niepoort Vintage Port 2017, Douro, as the Best Port Wine of the World Winner. 

Niepoort Vintage Port 2017 is a wonderful dark purple rim and great depth of colour characterizes the wine appearance. Aromatic profile is a superb youthful dark fruit. It is powerful on the initial attack, leading into a fresh mid-palate with beautifully seductive flavours of dark fruit. A great combination of power and elegance, ending in a bold, dry, lengthy and slightly green tannic finnish. The length and structure of this 2017 vintage promise a long-lived wine with great ageing potential.

Niepoort also won …

People´s Choice Award Winner

– Coche Branco 2017
– Redoma Tinto 2015

Gold Winner

– Charme 2015
– Bioma Vintage 2015

Best Portuguese White Wine

– Redoma Reserva Branco 2018 ( White, Reserve )

Best Portuguese Red Wine Winner

– Charme 2015

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Évora Monuments

Évora in Alentejo is one of the best cities to discover the Alentejo Gastronomy and Wines. The city is surrounded by amazing vineyards that it is possible to visit. Some famous, others more traditional, the offer of food and wine is amazing and the perfect spot for wonderful afternoons.

Évora is located in the centre of Alentejo region and it is an important point to other cities in the region. Has road connection with Montemor, Estremoz, Beja, Vila Viçosa, Reguengos, Alcáçovas, Viana do Alentejo and Arraiolos. You will be able also to get the A6 highway that connects Lisbon to Madrid. The city has connections to Lisbon by train and a regional airport with several services.

The region has an amazing history. You will find more than 5000 years in very different and unique monuments in the city and surroundings. We present 6 Évora monuments that you can discover during your trip to this city.

Six Évora Monuments

Évora, Roman Temple

Roman Temple

One of the most important monuments in Portugal, located on the highest point of the city and part of a roman forum.

During the centuries had several modifications and destruction, however maintains the original blueprint till today. 

This Roman Temple has a base almost intact with 3,5 meters ( equivalent to 11,5 ft ). Romans had a huge importance in Iberia Peninsula. In Alentejo, Talha Wines is a good example of the Roman Culture.

Évora, Sé Cathedral

Sé Cathedral

Built in the XIII and XIV century, has a gothic style and it is one of the most important medieval cathedral of Portugal and one of the best Évora monuments.

The construction was inspired by the Sé Cathedral of Lisbon.

You will be able to see the sihouette of the Sé Cathedral from a long distance, since it is in a highest point of Évora city. In fact, this Cathedral is the largest Medieval cathedral in Portugal. 

You will be able to access to the cathedral through the Roman Temple (short distance) or the access from Giraldo Square (Rua 5 de Outubro, in the middle of the square). 

The church was improved. Upper choir, baptistery, arch of the Chapel are some of the improvements made on 15th and 16th century.

Evora, Igreja Sao Francisco

Igreja São Francisco

Gothic and Manueline style, covered by an immense stone vault, is a masterpiece of Portuguese Gothic architecture.

Side by Side with Bones Chapel has an amazing story related with Franciscans Order from XIII century. The church has now an extensive area with ten side chapels. 

The chapels are open and have altarpieces of gilded, polychrome and stucco.

Évora, Bones Chapel

Chapel of Bones

Located at Igreja São Francisco was constructed in the XVIII century. It was built in the 18th century and is entirely lined with human bones.

Built by Franciscan monks more than 5000 corpses were exhumed and used as decoration of the walls .

The legend says that these bones belonged to victims of a plague or soldiers which died in a major battle.

However, the fact is that the bones came from people buried in several Medieval cemeteries in Évora surroundings.

It is known for the famous phrase written at the entrance. The phrase is “Nós ossos que aqui estamos pelos vossos esperamos” which means “Here bones that we are, for yours we wait”.

Palacio D Manuel, Évora Monuments

Palácio de D. Manuel

Constructed in the 16th century it survived the blend of gothic, manueline and renascentist influence.

Inhabited by several Portuguese monarchs, including D. Manuel I, D. João III and D. Sebastião.

It was definitely lost in 1895, having been destroyed in 1619, during the visit of Filipe III to the country, which he sent to destroy the palace for the benefit of the community.

Évora , Loios Convent

Lóios Convent

A church with clusters which are good examples of gothic and manueline in Évora.

At the moment the Lóios Convent is a hotel on the top of Évora in front of the Roman Temple.

Since it is a hotel, it´s not possible to visit besides the main entrance. 

Some of these monuments have restrictions during the visit or not possible to visit at all. However, they are a piece of history. Évora has also for travelers the amazing Alentejo Gastronomy , sweets, cheeses, Olive Oil and of course, wines. 

Tagus Nature Reserve

Tagus Nature Reserve is a reserve and a perfect location for birdwatching, besides food and wines possible to discover in some of the winemakers.

The estuary in front of Lisbon´s eastern area has the name of “Mar da Palha” ( Portuguese for The Straw Sea). This area is classified as a nature Reserve, located in the North of Alcochete ( famous besides the traditions for the location of one of the major Outlet in Europe ). The climate is in general humid and it is classified as one of the top 10 largest zones of its kind in Europe. 

Tagus Natural Reserve, Monocasta

Reserva Natural do Estuário do Tejo was created to protect specially the migratory aquatic birds living here. During the migration season the estuary receives more than 120.000 birds. The most common ones are the black cowbirds and represent around 20% of this species population in Western Europe. Usually they arrive from Serra de Albarracin ( Spain ) travelling a distance of 1100 kms ( 683.5 miles ). However, you will find other species such as a flock of pink flamingos.

Tagus Nature Reserve, besides birdwatching

Tagus Nature Reserve ( Reserva Natural do Estuário do Tejo) extends to North till Vila Franca de Xira, an area where bulls and horses are possible to see into the different properties / farms. Some of these farms besides bird watching experiences have unique wine tastings or even meals with wines pairing . MONOCASTA according the private wine tour experience, can customize the time lapse or experiences you may have interest in. 

On the Natural Reserve it is also possible to visit salt pans in Samouco or even seafront watermills in Seixal. Both activities are now eco-museums, so visitors can learn more about these activities. 

It is very unique and with amazing sights that make us relax and interact with nature. In conclusion, unique to visit and has an impact in two wine regions, which are : Tejo and Setúbal (north area).

Cante Alentejano

Cante Alentejano ( or Alentejo Song ) is without any doubt the most beautiful cultural heritage of Alentejo in Portugal. Unique worldwide it is a genuine a cappella song in choirs. This means that no instruments are used and voices are the instruments itself. 

These musical groups have men and women and sing in choir. It is a very popular manifestation of the culture and feature in several ares of Alentejo, specially South part of Alentejo. 

Cante Alentejano, Group, Alentejo, Monocasta
Picture : Pedro Ribeiro Simões Cante Alentejano, Portugal

Alentejo Regional Tourism Entity and the municipality of Serpa had the initiative of presenting Cante Alentejo to UNESCO – Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Singing in an a cappella , the lyrics usually speak about feelings of a specific moment or just day life. A little bit similar to Portuguese Fado in terms of content. Some of these choral groups are centenarians and started in informal contexts. Some have started in the fields while farming, while others started at local cultural houses. 

Visiting Alentejo in Spring or Summer, it is common to listen in some locations to the performance of these choral groups. Imagine a moment of food with wine pairing or a wine tasting and listening to beautiful voices in chorus.

Cante Alentejano & Wine Experiences

While visiting Alentejo ( besides the wines , cork or cheese ) it will be an excellent surprise. Occasionally without any schedule for shows, the magic happens spontaneously in a recreational group or even tavern. Simplicity of relaxation after work in the fields. However, nowadays you will also find Houses with schedules, promoting Cante Alentejano . 

If possible and required, MONOCASTA might find a show or a moment to include during your stay in Portugal . Alentejo has so much to offer and discover while traveling. Discover this Southern European Country, where you will find diversity of activities, however experiences based on wine tasting and food pairing represents perhaps the most required in the future. Our experiences are private by request and you can customize your timelapse and experiences you may have interest in.