It is true, Port runs in the streets, in Porto
Trip Start Mar 01, 2014
45Trip End Apr 05, 2014
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Now as my cousin Karen will say, Mr. Whatmore this is a better history lesson....
The first shipping of Port Wine was recorded in 1678, of course the Brits are involved, the Croft Family, John Croft a Yorkshire wine merchant was the prominent figure after he took care of his ancestors investments from the fifteenth century
The House of Croft is the oldest started in the fifteenth century. All grapes come from the Douro Valley and no where else. From what they call "the diamond ring" the grapes are harvested for these wonderful Ports. Tony and I have found something we both enjoy and feel worth researching and tasting. At home we do not get the variety they have here. White, Rose, and every colour or hue in between there is a different taste and aroma, it is fun to go to a tasting and it is fun to get a little serious and ask many questions. It is appreciated and you learn a lot. It is not like wine, but a lot like wine.
Considered a Wine, Port is one of the world's great classic wines and no meal, formal or informal is complete without it. We can understand this having experienced this in this region. The wonderful thing is they have not changed the way they are making the Port, five percent of the grapes at Croft are foot stomped and to buy these wines, if they work as they should, come at a very high premium. They will be laid down, purchased now but to be drunk in 2020 to 2045
I did mention to you a sandwich that was a specialty from this region. Tony and I stopped at a little place to try this delight. From observation we knew it was to be shared. OMG I am going to try and make this at home and when I get it right I will make it for you. It is crazy good, a little something you cannot eat everyday, but you have to have it once. Here goes.....
The Francesinha means little Frenchie in Portuguese. Originally from Porto, it is made with bread, wet cured ham, sausage, and steak or roast beef. It is covered with melted cheese and then a hot thick tomato and beer sauce is poured over it. The sauce is a little spicy. Invented in the 1960's by a returned emigrant from France, he tried to adapt the croque-Monsieur to Portuguese tastes. Other versions dated to the nineteenth century. It is often a ritual meal eaten once a week when friends get together before or after attending local football matches. It is served surrounded by a bed of chips,the famous sauce and complimented with a draught beer. Locals have their favourite restaurants arguing about the quality of the sauce and meats. Every restaurant has their secret sauce. Looks huge but it really isn't.
Tomorrow we leave for the Azores, I hope to be able to communicate from there but if not you will hear from me soon! Glad to hear spring looks like it may be coming!