Sping 2012 | Eola Does Spain and Portugal
“Eola Hills Does Wines of the World” tour. Since 2005, Eola Hills Wine Cellars has hosted wine excursions to Europe, visiting Tuscany, Bordeaux, the Rhone Valley, the Loire Valley and more. In Spring of 2012, we did Portugal and Spain!
Pre-trip | Douro River | April 19-April 22
Our group of 20 kicked off the the pre-trip with a welcome wine reception in our hotel. After a good night’s sleep and breakfast, we boarded the train for a beautiful two-and-a-half hour ride up the Douro River to the heart of Portugal’s wine country. Our destination was Pinaho where we were the exclusive guests of the Quinta Nova winery. This was our base for the next two nights, from which we explored the vineyards of the Pinaho.
We sampled the local fare – of course! – but the highlight was a winemaker dinner hosted by our own Steve Anderson, where he compared the different styles and approaches to wine making in Portugal and the Willamette Valley.
Main Tour | Porto to Madrid |April 22-May 1
Our visit to Porto began with a tour of the “Instituto do Porto” for a brief overview of the history of Port wine and how it is made. As soon as we become experts on Port wines, Steve led us on a walking tour along the Douro River to some of the most famous Port Houses on the south side, where we sampled the wares.
Other tour highlights in Portugal included a visit to a cork forest and factory to discover how cork is grown, harvested and made into the finished product that has been sealing our wines for centuries, and a terrific fish dinner – fresh, local fish prepared in a way unique to the region. Delicious
We continued the tour in Spain and the Rioja, with a stay in the town of Cenicero, where we visit one of the best wine museums in the world. We visited wineries and took a short ride into Basque Country and the beautiful walled city of Laguardia. This well preserved medieval town welcomed us as we strolled its cobblestone streets, window shopped, and mingled with the locals.
We continued on to Madrid, the capital of Spain and our final stop, to see some of the world’s finest museums and, after an obligatory siesta, check out the city’s famous tapas bars.
Post trip | Madrid and Toledo | May 1-2
For those of us who wanted to extend this great trip a little longer, we lingered another day in Madrid for additional sightseeing and a day trip to historic Toledo. Plus, we enjoyed dinner on the last night in the oldest restaurant in Europe. What a treat.
For more information
To learn more about upcoming Eola Hills Wines of the World Tours, give us a call at 1-800-291-6730 or send an email if you’d like to receive informational emails. We’ll let you know when next year’s destination is selected… tours sell out, so you’ll want to sign up early!