Wine and vineyards are inseparable from our Mediterranean civilizational culture and have contributed decisively to shape history and decide the economic evolution of many territories, among which is the Vila de Frades in Vidigueira county.
For 8,000 years, on one of the most beautiful walks in the food’s history, wine, whose well-known origins coincide with the northern Caucasus countries of Georgia and Armenia, has contributed to shape habits and practices that have influenced the construction of rural landscapes, stimulated technological changes in cultural practices, and had influence in some of the most decisive economic revolutions of the modern era. The dissemination of vineyards in the Alentejo, at that time of ancient Lusitania, by the Romans, happened more than two thousand years old. The history of men is confused and intertwined with the history of the vine and the wine in the Mediterranean basin.
“Vinho de Talha” is closely associated with cultural aspects and practices involved in millennial traditions. The methods, knowledge and know-how associated with it has been transmitted by successive generations of men and women responsible for the preservation of its tangible and intangible heritage. The physical and natural heritage, associated with geology, orography and landscapes, the architectonical heritage, evidenced in wine cellars and other associated buildings, the technological patrimony mirrored in utensils and equipment; and intangible heritage, which distinguishes denominations of origin, wine-making processes and techniques, know-how, festivals and community traditions. All of these heritages are inseparably and harmoniously connected, forming an intricate mosaic of knowledge, technologies, habits, and patrimonial assets.
Therefore, the production of “Vinho de Talha” incorporates the creative and inventive capacity of those who subjected the grapes to the first experiences of vinification in earthen pots as a way of achieving a non predictive result. Those who have the skills and knowledge necessary for the production of “Vinho de Talha”, who combine knowledge, productive experimental skills and the verification of the quality of their results, are masters of an art in which the sorcery of unpredictability lurks whenever a pot is opened and the fruit of the winemaking is poured.
“Vinho de Talha” uniquely synthesizes the important role of food products in the Mediterranean, where it acquired the technological, cultural and community attributes that gave the identity marks it still carries. The understanding and perception of “Vinho de Talha”, as a cultural product, were acquired in an accelerated way in the succession of processes of transformation, accompanied with technological and economic change, that occurred during the XX century. That determined the paradigm shift of its consumption and definition of new cultural habits.