Alentejo is commonly known as the "bread basket" of Portugal, a region of vast open countryside with undulating plains and rich fertile soil. With very few exceptions all the major towns are mainly reliant on agriculture, livestock and wood. There are several types of typical cheeses, wines and smoked hams and sausages made in Alentejo region, as well as being home to half the world's cork production.
In the last few years, vineyard space has doubled (from 10 to 20 thousand hectares) in response to demand within Portugal for modern, fruity, mostly red wines. The vast rolling hills of the Alentejo, with more consolidated land ownership than in the north, are well suited to fulfilling this demand.
However, it is all too easy to overlook the region as justÂ Portugal's "new world". It is also home to some extraordinary estates and winemakers, and to a particular grape - Alicante Bouschet - which seems to do remarkable things here, like no where else in the wine world.
Raymond Reynolds Ltd supplies wines from the following producers in the Alentejo region:
Quinta do Mouro
Herdade SÃ£o Miguel