Sir Cliff Richard at Adega do Cantor. Photo by: Dan Birch

Time to visit and taste

With many of the Algarve’s wineries now reopened for visits and tastings and very few tourists on the ground, there has never been a better time to discover Algarve wine.

Those of us who love wine have all probably visited at least a few wineries. For me, whenever I find myself in a wine producing region, I make a point of visiting at least one producer and something I have learned over the years is that there is no better place to taste a wine than right where it is made.

Here in the Algarve, there are now over 40 independent producers and whilst they were all forced to close to visitors during lockdown, many of them are now either open or opening sometime this month. And there has never been a better time for us residents to visit them.

Being early summer, the vines are now lush and green, with the grapes slowly ripening under the sun ready for harvest in August or September.

What’s more, you will not be jostling for space with coach-loads of tourists and, perhaps most importantly, you will be showing your support for the wineries – local businesses who have been hit hard by the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

Unlike larger wineries that rely mostly on export and/or supermarket sales, small independent producers, such as those here in the Algarve, depend on the tourist trade as their principal source of income.

Most Algarve wine is consumed at local restaurants, where owners and waiting staff are proud to promote the wine produced in our region, but they also need the additional income of tours, tastings and events taking place at their farms. With the shutdown of all restaurants in March and April and still only a few open, not to mention a dearth of tourists until at least early July, the local wineries need your business now more than ever.

All of the wineries are ensuring that guests will be safely welcomed for visits, with hygiene and social distancing measures strictly applied, and one winery has gone a step further. At Adega do Cantor, the Guia winery part-owned by Sir Cliff Richard, residents of the Algarve are being offered free wine tastings for the whole of June.

With the help of the Algarve wine authority CVA (Comissão Vitivinícola do Algarve), the Algarve Resident has compiled the table below showing which wineries can be visited this month and under what conditions.

Also worthy of note is a new App soon to be launched by the CVA, which will enable users to easily locate wineries in the region, find which restaurants sell each wine and keep up to date with events and happenings on the Algarve wine scene.

The following wineries are now open (or opening soon as stated). In most cases, visits and wine tours are available but must be booked in advance and are limited to small groups with social distancing measures in place. It is advised not to turn up without having booked, especially if you wish to take a tour.

Some, however, have their shops open to visitors without the need to book and some do not offer tours.

Farm gates may also be closed in some cases, so it is recommended to call in advance.

[email protected]

The following Algarve wineries are now open or opening as stated. Be sure to call and book in advance.

Adega do Cantor – Guia
289 572 668 / 968 776 971
[email protected]
The online store is open, while the physical store was due to open on Wednesday (June 3).
Only 15 people will be allowed inside the shop at any one time. There is a fee for visiting the winery, although tastings are free.

Cabrita Wines – Silves
282 491 070 / 917 236 030 (opening mid-June)
[email protected]
The store is open, with its wine tourism activities due to resume mid-June.

Herdade Barranco do Vale – Lagoa
929 029 360
[email protected]
Operating normally.

João Clara – Alcantarilha
967 950 012
[email protected]
The store opens early June and visits to the winery must be booked in advance and are only available for small groups.

Monte do Além – Odiáxere
282 799 883
[email protected]
The store is open on Fridays and visits must be booked in advance.

Monte da Casteleja – near Lagos
917 829 059 / 282 798 408
[email protected]
Operating normally.

Morgado do Quintão – Lagoa
917 504 414
[email protected]
The online store is operating normally. Visits to the winery and physical store must be booked in advance.

Monte dos Salicos – Carvoeiro
919 145 813
(tours not available)
[email protected]
Visits to the shop by prior booking.

Paxá Wines – Silves
282 352 321 / 911 941 170
[email protected]
The store is open but there is still no date for when winery visits and tastings will resume.

Quinta do Canhoto – Albufeira
969 008 138
[email protected]
Open and available for wine tastings by prior booking. Only 10 people allowed at any one time.

Quinta do Francês – Silves
282 106 303 / 963 963 616
[email protected]
The store is open without restrictions. Visits to the wine estate should be booked in advance.

Quinta Rosa (Jaap wines) – Silves
282 343 139 / 968 986 393 (expected to open June 15)
[email protected]
It is expected to open for visits on June 15, with a maximum of 20 people per visit.
Wines can also be purchased by order.

Quinta dos Santos – Lagoa
282 343 249 (restaurant open)
[email protected]
The restaurant is open.

Quinta dos Sentidos – Silves
967 130 138
[email protected]
No information at the time of writing.

Quinta da Tor – Loulé
289 417 018 / 964 026 310 (opening June 8)
[email protected]
Visits to the estate resume on June 8. A new online store is due to be launched soon.

Quinta dos Vales – Estombar
282 431 036
[email protected]
Visits to the store must be booked in advance and only one person is allowed inside at a time.
Visits to the estate are limited to groups of nine people and must be booked in advance.

Única Adega Cooperativa do Algarve – Lagoa
282 342 181
(shop opening June 8)
[email protected]
The store is due to open on June 8, with only one person allowed inside at a time.
Visits to the winery must be booked in advance from June 8.

Vila Alvor – Morgado da Torre
255 718 200
[email protected]
Operating normally until now (the store is limited to five people at a time).

Quinta dos Vales, Estombar
Quinta da Tor, Loulé
Paxá Wines, Silves
Sir Cliff Richard at Adega do Cantor. Photo by: Dan Birch