Terras de Alter, Companhia de Vinhos, Lda. is made up of Sociedade Agrícola das Antas, Sociedade Agrícola do Monte Barrão (companies with an extensive agricultural tradition in the Portalegre district of the Alto Alentejo region) and Pink Living, a company belonging to oenologist Peter Bright. The first two companies decided to join forces, and to complete their project they established a close connection with Peter Bright, who has an extensive CV in the field of production and international marketing of wine.
Terras de Alter, Companhia de Vinhos, Lda. uses grapes produced by its partner companies in the Alter do Chão and Fronteira region, though it also sources grapes from suppliers in the Alto Alentejo according to its specific needs.
With the goal of acquainting the world with Portuguese wines, Terras de Alter’s aim is to introduce premium quality Alentejo wine into the international market. Its target markets are mainly Europe and the United States.
It aspires to be a company of family traditions, with quality wines and an international presence, recognised for its excellence and committed to the development of premium Portuguese brands. This is achieved by means of unique positioning in the winegrowing market and a long-term vision, based on the quality and presentation of its wines and the importance of the novelty value of wine brands for the market.
The Alentejo is a high-quality wine-producing region. Planting of vineyards in the region dates back to Roman times, as shown by remains from that period, specifically grape seeds discovered in the ruins of São Cucufate, near Vidigueira, and a number of Roman granite treading tanks. The use of talhas (large terracotta pots) for fermentation of the must and storage of the wine can still be observed in some Alentejo wineries.
Located in the south of the country, the Alentejo’s landscape is mainly flat with some hills, which despite being of limited size, have a decisive influence on it. It is characterised by distinctly Mediterranean edaphoclimatic conditions, though some areas have a continental microclimate. Average temperatures throughout the year vary between 15 and 17.5º, with widely variable temperature ranges and the occurrence of excessively hot and dry summers. Average precipitation varies between 500 and 800 mm.
Its soils are notable for their diversity, ranging from the granitic soils of “Portalegre” and the calcareous and crystalline soils of “Borba” to the brown and red soils of “Évora”, “Granja/Amareleja" and “Moura” and the slate soils of “Redondo”, “Reguengos” and “Vidigueira”.
Considering the specific nature of this crop, restricted to small and well-defined geographical areas, wine-growing in the Alentejo is, in economic terms, an agricultural sector of fundamental importance to the region’s approximately 3000 winegrowers, constituting their main source of income.
In the Alentejo, the average area of vineyard per enterprise is above the national average. While the average for the continent is 0.9 ha of vineyard/enterprise, in the Alentejo this average is 5.4 ha of vineyard/enterprise.
The Terras de Alter vineyard is structured according to the new world approach, designed with the assistance of the University of Fresno, California. The vines are planted using modern training and irrigation techniques, facilitating treatment and ensuring quality.
The vineyards cover extensive plains or gentle hills, always providing intense exposure to sunlight. This constant sunlight, which assists the grapes’ development and maturation, plays a very important role in their quality. The combination of weather conditions and the type of land in which the vines are planted gives them unique features, which can be recognised in the colour, aroma and palate each time these wines are sampled.
The winery is situated very close to the grape producers, minimising the time which elapses between harvest and the start of processing. All equipment was selected according to the most modern principles to enable production in line with the new world approach.
The winery is sufficiently versatile to enable operation using processes of the highest quality, with manual harvesting, selection of the grapes upon entry and stringent control of temperature and other factors, resulting in an exceptional product. It is able to process grapes in vats containing considerable quantities for our regular wines, or in very small fermentation vats which enable the creation of minute batches of extremely high quality. This versatility enables us to create blending batches with which to tune or complement our top-end wines.
Terras de Alter, Companhia de Vinhos, Lda. relies on innovation and technology as fundamental factors in guaranteeing the highest standards of quality. From the plantation of vines to the selection of grapes, from the equipment of the Winery to the bottling process and placing the wine on the market, quality is an essential part of our strategy.
We are inspired by great attention to detail resulting from our close attention to the demands of the markets which consume the wines we produce. We are concerned with anything which might affect consumer opinion. We seek to embody in our products the ambitions of our customers, and ensure that our wines are fully integrated in the current market, year after year.
Just Wine partners with the finest bars, restaurants, wineries and retailers from around the world!