This wild and beautiful part of northern Portugal offers extraordinary good conditions for wine grapes. The steeply shelved slopes of the River Douro, hill after hill stretching off to the horizon with narrow roads winding around their contours. Here, the vine terraces bask in the sun that provides the deal climatic conditions, heating the pure schist and granite soil that is typical within this region. Though life is not so easy for Douro winegrowers; the vine roots are forced down between layers of rock seeking out the limited water, while schist absorbs and then radiates heat. For centuries, Douro growers have been supplying an eager world with Port. Now wine experts the world over recognize that the Douro region also offers ideal conditions for making unfortified wines of the highest quality, both red and white. Producers here are crafting stunning and highly distinctive wines that rank amongst Portugal’s most intense and complex.