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PORTUGAL

Portugal's history of wine production was influenced by the ancient traditions of the Greeks, Romans and Carthaginians. The country's legacy of "Port" began in the 18th century when England was deprived of the import of French wine due to the war. More often than not, the wines arrived spoiled, so producers began to fortify the wine with brandy in order to prolong its life. Port was made in the hot Douro River valley, packaged, and shipped downstream to a town appropriately named "Porto." While port is enjoyed all across the world, the English continue to drink the most per capita.

To protect the tradition, the Portuguese government created laws which state that port grapes can only be grown in the Douro River Valley and the vines must never be watered. Thus, the grapes struggle and root very deep into the soil, causing their skins grow tough. The Douro River Valley's vineyards are steeply terraced making it almost impossible to use modern grape- picking machines. Since nearly all grapes are picked by hand, the region is considered the world's most expensive place to maintain vineyards.

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Quinta Nova

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