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Wine Regions

Dão & Lafões

The Dão-Lafões region goes from an altitude of 1000 meters of the Estrela mountain to 200 meters above sea level in the lowers areas.

Dão & Lafões
With an approximate area of 376 thousand hectares and surrounded by the Caramulo, Montemuro, Buçaco and Estrela mountains, the vineyards in the Dão-Lafões region, located in Beira Alta in the central-north of Portugal, spread out between high mountains and valleys on hillsides.
The Dão-Lafões region comprises the municipalities of Aguiar da Beira, Carregal do Sal, Castro Daire, Mangualde, Nelas, Oliveira de Frades, Penalva do Castelo, Santa Comba Dão, São Pedro do Sul, Sátão, Tondela, Vila Nova de Paiva, Viseu and Vouzela.
The geographical conditions of this region are exceptional for wine production. The mountain ranges shelter the vineyards from the influence of the winds, while the climate is under the simultaneous influence of the Atlantic and the inland hinterland, resulting in cold and wet winters and hot and dry summers. The 20 thousand hectares of vineyards are situated mainly at altitudes between 400 and 700 meters and develop in schist or granite soils.
The vineyards in this region were developed by the clergy in the Middle Ages, specially by the Cistercian monks, who inhabited many lands of the region and fostered the wine production here. However, it was from the second half of the nineteenth century that this region benefited from a major development and became a delimited wine production area in the year 1908, and the second demarcated region in Portugal. The story goes that prior to the Portuguese leaving for the conquest of Ceuta, Dão wine was served at the lavish festivities held by the Infant D. Henrique in Viseu.
The region has a wide range of grape varieties, with the Touriga Nacional, Jaen, Rufete, Alfrocheiro-Preto and Aragonez dominating the reds, and the Encruzado, Bical, Cercial, Malvasia Fina and Verdelho, the whites. The red wines are full-bodied and can become more complex as it ages. The whites are fruity and balanced.
Wine Tourism
Wine Tourism
One of the most iconic images of the Dão-Lafões region is without doubt the Dão Wine Demarcated Region. A visit to this region will not be complete without a tour to one of its many wineries or wine estates, to taste the wine and the local delicacies.
Rich and varied, the traditional gastronomy of this region is also one of its main attractions. Some of the outstanding dishes from this region are the roasted goat, the Cozido à Portuguesa (boiled meat and vegetable dish), the greaves and bean stew from the Beirã region, the wild mushroom rice and the meat marinated in wine and garlic. Regarding the sweets, the medieval influence is still very present in desserts such as the rice pudding and the "Sant'Ana" fritters or pastries. Finally, the cheeses and local delicacies, with an honourable mention to the Serra da Estrela sheep cheese, the ex-libris of the typical products of the region and also to the sausages and dry-cured ham. In the leisure and culture scene, the region offers an array of activities, all enriched by the ancient traditions of the Dão region. The Solar do Vinho do Dão manor in Viseu is the headquarters of the Dão Wine Route. In Viseu, you should also visit the Museum of Sacred Art in the Cathedral, where you will find the treasure of the Cathedral Chapters, one of the oldest in Portugal. Regarding events, worth mentioning is the Dão Wine Fair, which is held in September and gathers the region's best wine producers. The Dão-Lafões region is also home to a great number of thermal spas, where a variety of therapeutic and wellness programs can be experienced.
  • Portugal By Wine - Wine Tourism in Portugal
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