AT A GLANCE:
Name of wine estate: Quinta do Crasto
Wine region: Douro
Standout points: The Pritzker Prize-winning infinity pool overlooking the Douro river
Winemaker: Jorge Roquette
Wine style: Ports and Douro table wines
The view from Crasto
As a hub from which to take in the majesty and expansiveness of the Douro Valley, Quinta do Crasto – at 600m altitude overlooking the Douro river – takes some beating. Situated between Régua and Pinhão, this 130ha estate boasts a wine tourism offer every bit as awe-inspiring as its Port wine range, with guided winery tours, tastings of the estate’s Port and table wines, exquisite dining in a stunning setting and boat trips on the twinkling river.
Fort and won
The first recorded references to Quinta do Crasto (the name ‘Crasto’ is derived from the Latin word ‘castrum’, which means ‘fort’) are from 1615 – long before the Douro Valley became the world’s first demarcated wine region, in 1756. A granite marker called a marco pombalino dating back to 1758 is still present at the quinta. Quinta do Crasto was purchased by Constantino de Almeida, founder of the famous Constantino Port house, in the early 1900s. After his death in 1923, Constantino’s son, Fernando, continued to run the estate and his legendary 1927 Vintage Port is still stored in the Crasto cellar. Fernando de Almeida’s daughter, Leonor Roquette, and her husband, Jorge Roquette, took over the estate in 1981. With the help of their sons, Miguel and Tomás, and daughter, Rita, they began the process of making it one of the great family estates of the Douro.
In the swim
But enough of the history – really it’s all about the quinta’s infinity pool. And to be fair, it is a very fine pool. Perched on top of a hill rising from the Douro river, it was designed by architect Eduardo Souto de Moura and won the 2011 Pritzker Prize – the world’s top architecture award. Perfect for the ultimate Instagram gloat, with the majestic valley glowing in the sunlight behind you.