Niepoort

Some experts call Niepoort the initiator of the modern Douro. Consequently, you shouldn’t miss the opportunity to try his wines in their home. Although the grape elixir is always on their creative minds, you might catch one of the Niepoorts for an inspiring chat about their globally acclaimed wines. 

Dirk van der Niepoort is currently the fifth generation to be CEO of the family company of the same name, but Dirk’s eldest son, Daniel, has also already joined the company.

Dirk is a wine fan like very few people in the world. He has no oenological training, instead he is making wine by intuition and experience. Through his passion for vines, grapes and wines, Dirk not only led his family business to international success, but also realized his own dream of creating a series of fabulous table wines. Through them and his commitment to the region, he laid the foundations for the modern development of the Douro.

His ancestor Franciscus would never have dared to dream that his great-great-grandson would become one of the best-known names on Planet Wine in the 21st century.

History

The Niepoort family has been operating independently in the port wine market since 1842. Franciscus Marius Niepoort, born in Hilversum, Holland, set foot in Portugal and founded the now world-famous company.

The family’s port wine house was founded at that time but only since 1987, when Dirk van der Niepoort joined his father Rolf in the family business, did the company own its own vineyards. Up to this point, Niepoort was a classic port wine dealer: the base wines were bought from winegrowers in the Douro, nurtured and matured, then blended and marketed from the company wine cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia  Oporto.

Dirk van der Niepoort, born in 1964, discovered his passion for wine as a young man during an internship at the Mövenpick wine merchant in Switzerland. The conventional work in the Port wine house no longer fulfilled him. He wanted to grow his own grapes in order to control quality right from the start. Dirk also intended to foot tread his wines in lagares (traditional granite fermentation basins common in the Douro region). This is an expensive type of maceration that requires a lot of hand and foot work. However, the passionate winemaker was certain that the port wines would lose density and complexity if they were only fermented in tanks.

He therefore bought the dilapidated Quinta de Nápoles in the Cima Corgo sub-region on the left bank of the Tedo, a tributary of the Douro. The Quinta was mentioned in historical documents as early as 1496, making it one of the oldest properties in the entire region. A year later, the company also bought Quinta do Carril, which is located just above Quinta de Nápoles.

However, the Niepoorts could not immediately work with the vineyards, which had been neglected for decades: first they had to make substantial investments. 15 hectares had to be completely replanted. Another 10 hectares with vines older than 70 years could be preserved.

In addition to producing his own port wines, Dirk experimented with table wines. In 1990 Dirk vinified his first red wine, called “Robustus”. Critics, however, declared it to be “unfit to drink” due to the strong tannins and acidity and the wine never came onto the market. Then, Dirk made his first red “Redoma” in 1991, and four years later the first white “Redoma” and in 1999 also the first rosé version of the now globally popular wine.

The first Batuta came onto the market with the 1999 vintage. It comes from the oldest vines on the north-facing slopes of Quinta do Carril and quickly achieved cult status in Portugal.

Since the harvest of 2007, the wines have been vinified in the new cellar at Quinta de Nápoles. After nine years of planning, it was built in just nine months.

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Are you looking for an enlightening wine-discussion paired with a stay in one of the best and most architecturally pleasing hotels in the whole Douro? Then you have to visit the Ferreiras! Their passion for the region is contagious and you will not leave the valley without being impressed by the local cuisine with fruit and vegetables from their own garden.

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Vilarinho dos Freires
5050 - 364 Peso da Régua Portugal

Tel: +351 254 323147
Email: geral@quintadovallado.com
Web: www.quintadovallado.com

Some experts call Niepoort is the initiator of the modern Douro. Consequently, you shouldn’t miss the opportunity to try his wines in their home. Although the gape elixir is always on their creative minds, you might catch one of the Niepoorts for an inspiring chat about their globally acclaimed wines.

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Quinta de Nápoles
5510-543
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Tel: +351 223 777 770
Email: info@niepoort.pt
Web: www.niepoort-vinhos.com

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5060-063 Sabrosa
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Tel: +351 254 920 020
Email : crasto@quintadocrasto.pt
Web: www.quintadocrasto.pt

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Vila Nova de Foz Côa
5150-501 Vila Nova de Foz Côa
Portugal

Tel: +351 279 762 156
Email: geral@quintadovalemeao.pt
Web: www.quintadovalemeao.pt