Discover how to be part of one of the oldest traditions in the world of Portuguese wines

Descubra como fazer parte de uma das tradições mais antigas do mundo dos vinhos portugueses

Lagarada is a centuries-old tradition in the winemaking history of Portugal, being an artisanal winemaking process in our country, especially in the production of red wines, translating into a beautiful cultural heritage.

The Lagarada consists of a traditional method of wine production, which corresponds to the use of stone presses to crush the grapes. These presses are trodden on by “treaders” who walk over the grapes barefoot, exerting pressure on them repeatedly so that the berries break and release the juice from the grapes. This process is repeated several times and for several days, so that the maximum color, aroma and flavor of the grapes can be extracted. Originating in ancient traditions, it is a method known worldwide for its authenticity and high quality results.

In this technique, the grapes that were harvested manually are carefully selected and destemmed, that is, they are separated from the stems, known as the peduncles of the bunches, and placed in the lagares. The treadmills, also called “lagareiros”, tread the grapes to the rhythm of traditional music, and begin what they call “trampling the harvest”.

After the grape crushing process, the must (grape juice) produced is transported to fermentation tanks or barrels. During fermentation, the sugars present in the must are converted into alcohol by the yeast. The wine is then aged in barrels to acquire complexity and develop distinctive flavors.

In Portugal, this method of producing wines has deep roots going back to ancient times. Lagarada has been improved over the years and transmitted from generation to generation, until today, becoming a heritage of Portuguese wine culture.

In turn, the Lagarada tradition has characteristics that differentiate it from other wine production methods. By treading the grapes, the winemakers manage to extract the grape juice in a delicate way, avoiding the breaking of the seeds and the release of unwanted tannins. In addition to this advantage, the use of stone vats contributes to the creation of an ideal environment for the fermentation of the grapes, since the granite retains heat and, at the same time, allows adequate ventilation for the proper development of the wine. The contact of the grapes with the stone is also capable of adding a unique mineral dimension to the wines.

Lagarada is a method that requires hard and artisanal work, involving the joint effort of several people. It is considered a moment of celebration, where family, friends and community members come together to tread the grapes together and bring the wines to life, promoting union and communion with a unique history, in the same way that it encourages conviviality, sharing of knowledge and the transmission of cultural values.

Wines produced from Lagarada are known for their structure, concentration of flavors and above all for their great aging potential, resulting in an intriguing experience for wine lovers. Although technology has emerged to help and make man's work more practical, our country continues to honor Lagarada as an oenological legacy and, even as modernity advances, Lagarada remains as a way of remembering the passion and dedication of the former Portuguese wine producers.

In the Douro region, for example, where this tradition is very well known, our historic Quinta da Pacheca, the first property to bottle the genuine identity of the Douro, offers its visitors wine tourism experiences such as the Traditional Visit and Lagarada, being a program unique and suitable for wine lovers, with visits to vineyards and cellars, accompanied by Lagarada, tastings and a traditional lunch. The Quinta, in this way, preserves this rich and authentic way of production by keeping alive its link with the Douro terroir, while providing visitors with a true journey into the world of Portuguese wines in an educational and sensory activity.

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