fortified wine Archives - Page 2 of 3 - Please The Palate
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Last week I was licking my lips after drinking Madeira, the nectar of the Gods, all week. Well, this week, I got to sip another Portuguese fortified wine, Moscatel de Setúbal and yet again, I am licking my lips. And that is why this lip-licking fortified wine made from at least 85 percent Muscat of Alexandria grapes is the Please The Palate pick of the week. Portugal is famous for a variety of fortified wines. Madeira comes from the island of Madeira, Port comes from the Douro Valley and Setúbal comes from the Setúbal Peninsula located in the southwest of Portugal.
Fortified wines may not be the biggest sellers in the U.S. but they should be. Madeira, Port, Sherry and Pineau des Charentes....there is so much to love about each of these fortified wines. In my recent column in the Napa Valley Register, I explored the delicious world of Pineau des Charentes that comes from the Cognac region in Southwestern France which you can read here.

If you say “Pineau” out loud, it sounds like “pinot.” As I looked into my glass filled with a golden yellow liquid, I thought, “This is pinot? Perhaps it is pinot grigio?”

Well, it was neither. It was Pineau des Charentes, simply called "Pineau," a French aperitif.

Pineau des Charentes, like Port, Madeira and Sherry, is a fortified wine. But, Pineau des Charentes is from the Charente department of the Cognac region in southwestern France.

This story originally appeared in the Napa Valley Register. Last week, I wrote about how Madeira excites the palate, but that many of the tourists that visit Madeira do not even...