Vinha Maria Teresa was named after the first granddaughter of Constantino de Almeida (the founder of Quinta do Crasto). It is a centenary plot of vines and one of the oldest on the estate. Situated on the eastern slope of the property, at extremely low altitude near the Douro River, it is planted on dry stone terraces or socalcos that have excellent sun exposure. The 4.5 hectares occupied by Vinha Maria Teresa are stunning in natural beauty and, above all, in the matchless qualities of their old vines.

More than 100 years ago, wine producers throughout the Douro region would plant a mix of almost any grape varieties that they had on hand, since they intended to produce Port wine, which has the peculiar characteristic of using a mix of many different varieties. That is why this plot ended up with many, randomly mixed varieties.

In 2013, due to the advanced age of the Vinha Maria Teresa, Quinta do Crasto began the genetic mapping of each variety. The idea was to replace some of the dead vines with genetically identical varieties so that they might perpetuate the terroir and the field blend of such a unique plot. Quinta do Crasto, in partnership with the Universidade de Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro (UTAD), developed a project called PatGen Vineyards, which seeks to identify all of the varieties that make up the Vinha Maria Teresa. To date 49 different varieties have been identified, including four white grape varieties and one unknown red grape variety, in other words, one which has yet to have been matched anywhere.

A hundred year old vine in a plot such as Vinha Maria Teresa will have an extremely low productive capacity and will never be able to produce the same yields as a new vine. The roots in the Vinha Maria Teresa extend dozens of metres deep where they penetrate the schist soils in search of water and nutrients. This increases the competition between the various vines and helps improve the productive capacity of each plant. Nevertheless, the average annual production of each vine in the Vinha Maria Teresa is around 300g.

Taking advantage of the low yield of these old vines, the Quinta do Crasto winemaking team has managed to make a world class wine that is complex and full of character and that is capable of ageing in the bottle for years to come.

Grapes from the Vinha Maria Teresa plot are destined for the production of the Quinta do Crasto Reserva Vinhas Velhas wine. However, in exceptional years, these grapes are used to produce the single vineyard wine that shares the plot’s name: Quinta do Crasto Vinha Maria Teresa. In these special years, between 2,000 to 8,000 bottles are produced, depending on how exceptional the year is. The record production of the Quinta do Crasto Vinha Maria Teresa wine took place in 2007 when 8,001 bottles of this special wine were produced.

Vineyards like the Vinha Maria Teresa are what make the Douro wines so special and so appreciated worldwide. This treasure, these unique characteristics of the Douro vineyards, makes this emblematic estate an example of the cultural heritage that belongs to us all. This is why it is so important to protect and to safeguard this legacy for the enjoyment of generations yet to come.