Pimentos, street, smoked, tradition

Driving through the Rioja capital of Haro, after a wonderful visit to Vina Tondonia winery, we were looking for a recommended restaurant for an early dinner before starting our return journey home. Losing our way in the winding narrow streets, we saw some elderly women sitting on low chairs and a wisp of smoke in the background. The aroma of roasted pepper filled the air. Peppers were brought to Spain, and the Old World, from Mexico and South America by Columbus in 1493 returning from the voyages of discovery. At the end of summer, when the peppers are the ripest, reddest and juiciest, villagers gather to roast them over an open fire, to peel off the blackened skins, tear the flesh into stri

Quinta Nova de Nossa Senhora do Carmo, Douro Valley, Portugal

With a history dating as far back as 1725 and with buildings almost as old, Quinta Nova is one of the most elegant estates of the Douro valley.. The current owners are the Amorim family, of cork production fame, who purchased Quinta Nova in 1999. After selling off the estate's Burmester Port label and stocks, Quinta Nova now concentrates on producing high quality DOC Douro wines and vintage and LBV ports from its 85 hectares under cultivation. In addition to scoring as high as 96 points for its premium Mirabilis Grande Reserve White and 94 for its matching level red from Robert Parker, Quinta Nova's wines constantly take top prizes in international competitions. Starting with the whites, we

A voyage of discovery ... finding the real Old World

On my first visit to Portugal I found a world I was rarely exposed to, and one I had yet to understand - a world of exciting wines made from native varieties, from old vines, in traditional ways.Over the next few weeks I will share these discoveries, experiences, and newly-gained knowledge. Photo by David Silverman. Copyright © 2016 dpsimages. All Rights Reserved.

Bussaco Palace Winery, Mata do Bussaco, Portugal

When planning our Iberian adventure, Zeev Dunie of Seahorse Winery insisted we spend a night at Bussaco, an opulent royal palace built between 1888 and 1907 by the last kings of Portugal. The hotel has its own highly-rated but little-known winery dating back to the 1920's. Situated conveniently between Lisbon and Porto, a stay here is not to be missed. The rooms are comfortable, finished in wood and marble. The hotel is decorated with azulejo blue and white tiles forming huge murals dedicated to the country's age of discovery. There are also murals recognizing the victory of the Anglo-Portuguese troops at the site against Napoleon over 200 years ago. The accommodation is reasonably priced an

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