Slow Food conference also includes a slow Port Wine tasting

Port Wine in the Salone del Gusto - Slow Food conference

During this week is taking place in Turin, Italy, the Salone del Gusto fair, and event under the umbrella of the Slow Food organization. Slow Food, for opposition to Fast Food, aims to preserve traditional and regional cuisine. During this 4 day event, there was a workshop dedicated to Port Wine. Italy is not a traditional market for Port. Actually, it has one of the lowest per capita consumption between the countries of the Occidental Europe. So it was with a lot of surprise that I received the news that the event sold out well in advance. Together with me, there were two other family producers talking on the workshop: Miguel Braga from Quinta do Mourão and Manuel Viseu from Quinta de Baldias.

We were there to talk about Port Wine in general. A little bit of history; how is it made and aged; different types of Port.Suddenly, the very active audience exposed the trickiest question – “Why can’t we find more Port Wine in Italy, is this a problem of marketing, a problem of demand?”

I made a video of this moment of the discussion. Sound is not very good, sorry. I’m writing few topics about it, but I would really love to hear from you. Is Port Wine popular in your country? If not, how can we change this?


Now it’s your turn!


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  • Lee

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  • Joe Gates

    Hi Oscar, I think Port Wine could be more popular in the US
    if the Port name was better protected here. As a tiny grower
    and wine producer of US wine made from portuguese grape varieties, I see first hand the damage done to the Port name.At wine tastings in N. california,I can get people to
    taste white,rose and red table wines labled with portuguese varital names very easily,but with my dessert wines that are made like Port,using portuguese Port varieties and grape brandy,I get a hi refuseal rate,sometimes 50%,when I
    mention my dessert wines are made in the Port-style. The problem is these people have tasted all the terrible US wine that is labeled Port. In 2006 the US goverment and the EU signed a wine trade agreement that stopped any new US wine labels from containing the the name Port,but it allowed
    labels approved before march 2006 to be still used.(TTB Industry Circular 2006-1 Oscar and Port Wine Trade lobby US gov for law change mentioned in 2006-1. Joe

  • Oscar Quevedo

    Joe, that’s a good point and very much right. The Portuguese Government, and the Port Wine Institute together with the trade, did not protect as much as necessary the name Port Wine. Specially because it is not difficult to make a Port Wine-style of fortified wine in many wine regions around the world and several wineries in the USA, Argentina, South Africa or Australia took advantage of this loophole. The 2006 agreement will help to protect a little bit the name Port, but it comes late.