The Azores Wine Company's viticulture and winemaking embraces local traditions and cultures. This encourages the reintegration of the human factor into viticulture and the recovery of vineyards, which has been degraded over the years by arduous and laborious work. There is a daily battle between the force of nature of the volcano and the people who shapes the landscape for the vines.
Respect for nature in a non-interventionist approach, in which nature supplants man. In the Azores Archipelago, the term "sense of place" could not be more striking. Azores wines are a mirror of its soil, climate, viticultural tradition and culture.
On the island of Pico, the vines grow in extreme conditions, very close to the sea and planted in the crevices of the bed rock, in volcanic soil, defying the very definition of soil.
Pico's vineyards are unusually close to the sea, between 50 and 300 metres; so close that the sea sprays the vineyards with salt. Viticulture on Pico Island is as a battle between the sea and the Pico Mountain. In the Azores Wine Company's vineyards, the salt water seeps underground and mixes with the fresh rainwater in a brackish combination that the vines’ roots drink from.
The influence of the 2351-metre high Pico mountain is imense. The clouds that usually gather around them lead people to plant the vines so close to the sea that they used to say: the vines are "where you hear the crab sing".
The man-made dry-stone “currais” are endless walls of volcanic stone, which seek to protect the vines from wind and sea salt, and at the same time create a microclimate for the hottest vines. They were built some 500 years ago, and classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2004. The Azores Wine Company owns one of the most famous “curral” locations on Pico Island, Lajido da Criação Velha.
An expanse of vineyards planted in a volcanic field with a traditional Azores winemaking architecture that is preserved and restored every year.
The viticulture of the Azores Wine Company prides itself by using non-interventionist viticulture that respects the nature of the indigenous grape varieties of the Azores and its terroir. A viticulture with a philosophy of preservation and recovery of the winegrowing heritage of Pico Island.
The winemaking of the Azores Wine Company follows the same principle of minimal intervention. Focused on respect for the Azores wine culture and its indigenous grape varieties, but never giving up the taste for creating new wines and facing new challenges. We make wine with a strong scientific base, but always letting intuition take over when necessary.
By bringing together such strong factors as proximity to the sea, soils on volcanic rocks, Atlantic and island climate, unique grape varieties that are exclusive to the Azores Archipelago, the role of a winemaker is to transport these characteristics to the wine, resisting the temptation to do better, different or original for its own sake, and focusing on giving expression to Azores wines that were grown almost at sea.