Wine is the most healthful and most hygienic of beverages. – Louis Pasteur. That’s the quote featured on the Qunita do Frances winery website. The winery is located near Silves, Portugal. We took a tour one late afternoon.
Our guide told us the name of the winery reflects the fact that the owner is from France- a pathologist named Patrick Agostini, who came to Portugal because he married a Portuguese woman. Makes sense that a French winery owner would use a quote from a famous French scientist like Louis Pasteur on his website.
Although born in France, Patrick is the descendant of an Italian family with a tradition in wine-making, He not only studied medicine but also viticulture (the cultivation of grapes) and oenology (the science and study of wine and winemaking) near Bordeaux. So after moving to Portugal and getting a job as a pathologist at a hospital in Portimao he found a piece of property nearby where he could start a winery.
The vineyards surrounding the winery were planted in 2002 and the first Quinta do Frances wine produced in 2008. Some of the Quinta do Frances wines have won awards both in Portugal and internationally. They use casks made from new French oak to age the wine. The Qunita do Frances winery sells around 35,000 bottles of wine a year. Our tour guide was friendly and a veritable fount of information but all three of us figured we’d been on more exciting and interesting wine tours. We enjoyed tasting our three different wines, a white, a red and a roseau, but agreed we received equal enjoyment from the much cheaper Portuguese wines we buy for two or three dollars in the grocery store on our street in Praia da Luz.