Fine Wine & Wineries
Wine Tours Designed Just For You
Spain, Portugal and France are three great Wine Producing Countries and home to some of the most famous names in the wine-making world. Big, complex wines with character, style and quality are just waiting to be tasted in Bordeaux, La Rioja, Priorat, Penedes, Ribera del Duero, Alentejo, Douro Valley ….. so sip bold Bordeaux in a French Chateau, delightful Douro in a hilltop Quinta or a signature Rioja in a Spanish Bodega.
Spain has many Wine Appellations known as “DO’s”, Denominaciones de Origen, but just two of them have been distinguished as “qualified”, meaning that their quality standards are a bit higher than the rest: DOC (Denominación de Origen Calificada) Rioja and DOQ (Denominació d’Origen Qualificada) Priorat. Aging is a very important aspect of Spanish wines so Spain has an aging classification system as well, meaning you will find Crianza, Reserva or Gran Reserva on the label too. Portugal is divided into 14 Regional Wine areas: Vinho Verde, Trás-os-Montes, Porto and Douro, Távora-Varosa, Bairrada, Dão, Beira Interior, Lisboa, Tejo, Península de Setúbal, Alentejo, Algarve, Açores and Madeira. Portuguese wine is then categorized using the ‘DOC’ (Denominação de Origem Controlada) system meaning Controlled Denomination of Origin. In the Douro there are separate DOCs for unfortified wine and for Port, although geographically they both lie within the same boundaries. At the moment, both the traditional terminology of DOC and the new pan-European “DOP” Denominação de Origem Protegida or Protected Denomination of Origin are used.
In France the appellation d’origine contrôlée “AOC” meaning “controlled designation of origin” sets the rules and today there are hundreds of AOC’s. However the new pan-European AOP or Appellation d'Origine Protégée or Protected designation of origin will replace the long standing AoC. In addition to the AOC, which regulates a wine’s production, there is a further classification system, existing mostly for Burgundy and Bordeaux, in which the quality of their AOC wines is further rated. In Bordeaux this is the Cru, also referred to as 'growths' of which there are five levels, attached to particular chateaux.
If you enjoy sipping fine wine in the Mediterranean breeze, along the left bank of the Gironde or visiting the vineyards and cellars of century’s old family owned wineries, then Spain, Portugal and SW France are just the ticket! Visit top wine estates and meet vineyard owners and in-house experts who lovingly show you into their world. Discover some of the best wine regions in Spain, Portugal and France on a Wine tour designed just for you - the wine enthusiast. Here below you will find some of our sample itineraries for your Fine Wine & Wineries experience in Europe:
Wine is sunlight, held together by water. Galileo