The metropolitan region of Lisbon is rich in quality wines, produced in large quantities, which gives them an advantage regarding the sale on international markets. The vine culture in this region dates from the Middle Ages and its cultivation was closely linked to various religious orders, namely the Cistercian religious order, in Alcobaça.
The Lisbon region (Figure No. 13) is one of the largest wine regions of the country in terms of planted vineyard area and production of wine. The region doesn’t have a very sharp terrain, except for the southern region. The soils are mostly clay-limestone and clay-sandy formations and the climate, by the proximity of Atlantic Ocean, is quite temperate. In the area further to the south are located the best known Designations of Origin like Bucelas, Carcavelos and Colares.
The Lisbon region has nine Designations of Origin: Encostas de Aire, Óbidos, Alenquer, Arruda, Torres Vedras, Lourinhã, Bucelas, Carcavelos and Colares, all with a huge fine wines production capacity and in large volumes for world markets, with a good quality / price ratio.
I also highlight the Lourinhã Designation, a region with a very significant role, although unknown to many, in producing fine wines for distillation, which provide great spirits. The Lourinhã Designation of Origin is the only exclusive D.O. for the production of spirits in Portugal, and the only in the world outside France, specialized in the production of this high-alcohol drink. Worldwide there are only three Wine Spirits Designations of Origin; Lourinhã, in Portugal, and the French regions of Cognac and Armanac.
Old spirits of Lourinhã Designation of Origin are recognized for their excellent quality, representing a good opportunity to enhance the image of quality for Portugal. The grape varieties used and authorized for the production of Lourinhã Designation of Origin spirits are Cabinda, the sole red grape variety, Alvadurão, Alicante Branco, Boal Espinho, Barquinhas, Malvasia Rei and Tália, in white grape varieties; a twenty four months stage in oak barrels is required.The grape varieties most used in this region of Lisbon are Arinto, Fernão Pires, Jampal, Vital, Malvasia, Boal and Esgana Cão, in white grape varieties, and Castelão, Tinta Roriz, Touriga Franca, Touriga Nacional and Caladoc in red grape varieties.