The Douro Valley is perhaps the most beautiful wine region on earth. Not for nothing is this region included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. Very steep walls topped with terraces where the grapes bake in the sun, with the glistening river deep below.
Morgadio da Calçada is located in the village of Provezende, with only 300 inhabitants. In this town there are 13 beautiful, monumental buildings dating from the 16th to 18th centuries, Casa da Calçada being one of them. Built at the end of the 17th century by order of the influential judge, Jerónimo da Cunha Pimentel and recently purchased by Dirk van der Niepoort, one of the prodigies of the Port world. Dirk not only releases Port under his own name, but also makes Port for the small house Morgadio da Calçada.
Where many a Port producer opts for ultra-modern, industrial production methods, Dirk instead chooses to stay as close to tradition as possible. The fruit is picked by hand and then poured into large granite containers (Lagares). There, the feet of the "trekkers" take over the work. The soft soles of the feet do crush the grapes, but the seeds remain intact. This sugar-rich mixture ferments until a low alcohol content is created. Then they add pure wine alcohol, which immediately stops the fermentation. Port is born, lusciously sweet, powerful in color and full of natural extracts. Immediately after this "mutage," the young wine goes to the barrel cellar for aging.
They are one of the few Port producers that still allows all Port wine to age in wooden barrels, some as old as 100 years. Because all wines are aged in wooden barrels, the wine is not as impressed with the oxygen it comes into contact with when opened. Therefore, the wine certainly does not have to be finished the same day. About the "ordinary" Ruby Reserve, wine critic Hubrecht Duijker wrote "you can't expect better than this.