Quinta da Bacalhoa Winery Guide
The Bacalhôa palace at Quinta da Bacalhôa is only one of the numerous estates that now make up Bacalhôa Vinhos de Portugal, S.A., one of Portugal’s largest and most innovative wine companies. However, it was here where the Bacalhôa story started and remains the most fascinating to visit. Situated in the Península de Setúbal wine region, just 20 miles south of Lisbon, this region is famous for its Moscatel de Setúbal dessert wine. Apart from these delicious sweeties, which continue to be produced at Bacalhôa today, investment and innovation have produced some magnificent dry wines that have gained national and international recognition. Bacalhôa, from a winemaking perspective, dates back to 1922 when under the name of João Pires and Filhos, they started by selling their grapes to other producers. However, it wasn’t until the 1970s that the estate began to produce its own wines. Then, over 20 years later, in 1998, Comendador José Berardo became a significant shareholder, further contributing to the improvements and renovations needed to optimize the wine vinification and restore the beautiful Palace. 1979 was the first harvest of the new vine plantations, which included varieties similar to that of a Bordeaux blend (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot) and which quickly became one of Portugal’s most- sought-after wines.
The Palace itself dates back to the 15th century, formerly belonging to the Portuguese Royal family and having passed through several hands since; it now belongs to the Berardo Foundation, led by Comendador José Berardo. Each owner has added to the charm in one form or another. Today, it is proudly one of the country’s best-preserved pieces of Renaissance architecture, with an outstanding Portuguese tile collection. Interestingly some of the most significant restorations were carried out under the ownership of Orlena Scoville, a North American who purchased the estate in 1936. Her grandson was responsible for transforming Bacalhôa into one of Portugal’s largest wine producers.
Today Bacalhôa Vinhos de Portugal, S.A. produces over 20 million liters of wine across various wine regions (Dão, Douro, Bairrada, Óbidos, Alentejo, and the Península de Setúbal). On a visit to this alluring estate, you can sample some of their fine wines from other regions if you wish. No trip to Lisbon is complete without visiting this wonderful estate; it makes for a lovely day out; after spending the morning at the Quinta, you can explore the striking Arrábida National Park, local beaches, and the nearby town of Sesimbra.
QUINTA DA BACALHÔA TINTOCabernet Sauvignon, Merlot aged for 13 months in French Allier oak barrels, followed by a minimum of 6 months in the bottle. Red fruits, rounded tannins and an incredibly long. Highly recommended with the local Azeitão cheese.
PALÁCIO DA BACALHÔACabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot. Aged for 18 months in new French oak Allier and a minimum of 19 months in bottle. Rich, concentrated red fruits, with hints of coffee and vanilla. Complex and elegant.
BERARDO RESERVA FAMILIAR TINTO70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Syrah. 14 months ageing in French oak barrels, followed by at least 12 months in the bottle. Complex, rich red fruits and hints of toffee. Fabulous balance of tannins, acidity, and fruit. Excellent length. Will certainly benefit from time in the cellar.
CATARINA WHITEBlend of Portuguese White (Arinto, Fernão Pires, Maria Gomes) with a significant touch of Chardonnay. The Chardonnay is fermented for 5 months in new French oak barrels. Tropical fruits with a touch of wood. Refreshing, long and complex. A fabulous white, especially price vs. quality.
QUINTA DA BACALHÔA BRANCO50 % Sémillon, 25% Alvarinho, 25% Sauvignon Blanc. Initial fermentation in stainless steel tanks, 16% of the Sémillon was aged in new French oak with bâatonnage. Crips and refreshing, with gooseberry and apricot notes. Long and elegant.
BACALHÔA MOSCATEL DE SETÚBAL SUPERIOR100% Moscatel de Setúbal. A short fermentation is interrupted by wine spirit addition. The wine then spends the winter months in stainless steel for a post-fermentation maceration with skin contact (5-6 months). Aged for 10 years in small wooden casks. This heavenly elixir has rich aromas and flavors of dried fruits and orange blossom. Incredibly balanced with a great acidity complementing the sweetness.
Facts & Figures
Península de Setúbal
Area under Vine
Age of vines
Oak barrel origin
Vasco Penha Garcia, Filipa Tomaz da Costa, Francisco Antunes
Comendador José Berardo
Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot, Touriga Nacional, Aragonez, Moscatel de Setúbal
Grape Varieties Used by the Winery
Discover the versatile grape: Spain's Tempranillo, and in Portugal, Aragonês and Tinta Roriz (Douro Valley). Embrace the rich cultural tapestry of this beloved varietal.Find out more
Discover the irresistible allure of Cabernet Sauvignon—a worldwide favorite with robust, dark-bodied flavor. Unleash your wine journey today!Find out more
Merlot is the most cultivated grape in Bordeaux and closely related to Cabernet FrancFind out more
Moscatel de Setúbal
The Moscatel de Setúbal grape is a prized varietal known for its distinctive flavor and historical significance. Grown in Portugal's Setúbal region, it produces aromatic and sweet wines with notes of orange blossom, honey, and ripe fruits.
Syrah is dark-skinned and perhaps the most underrated of the 'noble' red grape varieties.Find out more
Touriga Nacional red varietal is a dark-skinned grape predominately grown in Douro and Dão. In the Douro, it is used as a blending grape in Port wines.Find out more
Experience the taste of Portugal's coastal Setubal wine region. Our guide showcases the best wineries, varietals, and insider tips. Start your journey today! Read more
If you would like us to customize an exclusive luxury tour, contact us and let us know your travel plans. We offer luxury food and wine tours for private groups of a mininium two guests. In addition, all of our private, chauffeured tours are available year-round upon request.
Welcome to Cellar Tours, the premier Luxury Travel Specialist since 2003. Our goal is to provide you with the ultimate food and wine vacation experience, with exclusive Mercedes chauffeured tours that showcase the best of local cuisine and wines.
Our team specializes in crafting bespoke, custom-designed vacations, events, and incentives tailored to your unique tastes and preferences. Travel is not just about seeing new places - it's about creating unforgettable memories and indulging in the finer things in life.
As members of Slow Food, OTAVA (Travel Agency Association in Spain), and the IACP (International Association of Culinary Professionals), we promote sustainable tourism and support local communities. We work closely with top-rated hotels, restaurants, and wineries to provide you with the highest level of service and attention to detail.
Whether you're planning a romantic getaway, a family vacation, or a corporate retreat, let Cellar Tours be your guide. With our passion for food and wine, extensive knowledge of local culture, and dedication to exceptional customer service, we're confident we can exceed your expectations.
Contact us today to start planning your dream vacation – we can't wait to hear from you!