Sunday, July 6, 2008

Port in Porto

There are many lovely things about Portugal. The ubiquity of port wine is one and the fact that many bodegas in Porto will give you a free tasting (Croft and Noval among them) is another.

A type of port that is rarely available in Canada and that I first came to try at Noval in Porto is a white. Unlike ruby or tawny ports, which are typically served as digestifs (though tawny, technically, can be served as an aperitif as well), white port is usually served chilled as a delicious and relatively inexpensive aperitif. It varies in sweetness: a regular white is the driest, a fine white is sweet, and a lagrima is sweeter still. The LCBO in Ontario appears to stock a few brands of fine white, though I expect that you might have to hunt for them.

When we checked into the stately Pestana Palace Hotel, overlooking the Duoro River in Porto, the staff served us a fantastically refreshing mixture of white port (approx. 1 part) and tonic (approx. 2 to 3 parts)--over ice and garnished with a lemon slice. Search the LCBOs, find the white port and make this your new summer drink.

No comments: