The Symingtons are spreading out in Portugal, with the acquisition of an estate in the Alto Alentejo region in the south of the country.
This is the culmination of a few years of searching for a suitable site in the region by the established port and Douro wine producers. The 207ha estate, formerly known as Altas Quintas, contains 43ha of mature vineyard, located within the São Mamede National Park, and part of the Portalegre region of the Alentejo.
The area is influenced by the Serra de São Mamede, southern Portugal’s highest mountain range, with moderate summer temperatures. Drawn not only by the increasing quality of the wines being made here, The Symingtons also considered the vineyard’s soils, a mixture of schist and granite.
‘After 135 years in the Douro our family felt that the time was right to make wine in another great Portuguese region,’ said Rupert Symington. ‘We love the Alto Alentejo and especially the location of this vineyard. We plan to make some exciting and interesting wines here’.
The family’s focus is entirely on the winemaking potential of the site, rather than its past, choosing not to acquire any of the former estate’s stock.
The wines will eventually join Symington’s ports, including Graham’s, Cockburn’s and Dow’s, as well as its Douro wine production from more than 1,000ha of vineyards spanning 27 quintas.