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After working in a winery in the region, Fábio Moreira decided to invest the experience of the years in the cellar to become his own entrepreneur in the field of wine tourism.
Algarve Wine Tours is one of the most popular tour operators in the sector that offers visitors unique experiences in wonderful scenarios. Guided tours to discover the cycles that make up the work of a winery, from the vineyard to the entire winemaking process. The wine tasting is accompanied by basic information on tasting techniques.
The tourist will also be able to appreciate some beauties of the Algarve region such as, for example, the historic town of Silves (ancient capital during the Muslim occupation); the heritage of fish preserves in the Arade river, which together with fishing activities was a pillar of the economy, ending with lunch on the river bank to savor that influence on gastronomy.
Fábio Moreira tells the characteristics of the Algarve wine region, starting with the characteristics of the territory and the wines.
The Algarve is known as the sunniest region of Europe, an average of 3000 hours of sun a year and 300 hundred days. Particularly the summers, the period of maturation of the grapes, the sun exposure is high, somewhere between 6:30 AM to 8:30PM. The temperatures during the day are around 30 degrees. This allows a very good maturation of our grapes, but we also have to collect the grapes mostly in August and first half of September, or we will have too high maturation.
However, most of the vineyards grow in a range that is more or less 5 KM from the coast and receive an important Atlantic influence that counterbalances the sun and heat. The afternoons are commonly very windy which brings some humidity from the ocean, at night the temperatures drop significantly and there’s more humidity which also allows us to have balanced grapes with good acidity and leading to fruity and elegant wines.
We have a good diversity of wines from fresh, elegant and easy going withe wines and roses, but also full bodied and intense red wines.
We also have light and fresher red wines, where the most peculiar is our most iconic grape variety called Negra Mole, that makes very easy going reds that we drink cold in the summer. This is a grape native of the Algarve and that doesn’t exist anywhere else in Portugal and the world.
This diversity of wine is achieved through some balanced conditions of our climate that I described before, we can get more freshness close to the ocean or more hot and dry conditions if we plant more inland, but also combined with different grape varieties that we plant.
Our soils are mostly made of clay and limestone what together with the ocean influence brings a good minerality to our wines.
Fabio virtually takes us to one of the most fascinating areas of wine-growing Portugal that he tells us this way:
The Algarve is mostly composed of small and family owned vineyards, many are possible to visit and offer tours and wine tastings and pairings with local snacks, in an intimate and exclusive atmosphere. The touristic offer of our wineries is still growing, but there’s already one or another winery that has a restaurant, some offer food experiences like picnics or locally homemade meals, or special meals at the wineries associated with catering services. There’s also one or another property that offers accommodation too. But in general those tourist complements are not present in many and still have much space to grow. We are also a region with a small wine production being the production today close to 2 million Liters of wine. According to the website of the local commission of wines there are 45 wine producers.
What services do you offer to tourists who want to discover the wine area?
Apart from some of the services that I described in the previous question provided by the linerie. There are some tour operators that offer programs of wine tours. It’s the case of my company, I believe that it is the only one expertized in wine tours and only dedicated to that. I am a professional wine guide. In my wine tours I try to teach people the secrets of winemaking and cultivation of vineyards, about the characteristics of the Algarve and its wines and their story. I worked before in a winery here in the region and learned a lot about wine making processes and cultivation of grapes, started this activity where I share with my clients all the knowledge I acquired about wine. My programs also try to combine the tours to the wineries and tastings with a discovery of the local gastronomy.