The Santiago Wine Estate is located 20 mins. from Lisbon in the hills of Serra da Arrábida Hills, a short chain of mountains running along the south coast of the Setubal peninsula. It has 30 ha of which 18 ha are vineyards and the rest is cork trees and umbrella pines.
Arrábida Natural Park is a natural park that covers the Arrábida Hills, the Mediterranean-like vegetation and microclimate of which resemble Adriatic locations such as Dalmatia. Two of the park's beachesPortinho da Arrábida and Figueirinhaare popular among the inhabitants of Lisbon and Setúbal. Founded in 1976 and covering 108 square kilometres (42 sq mi), it is one of the 30 areas which are officially under protection in the country.
Much of the area is flat and sandy, with the exception of the Arrábida Hills, where the soils are limestone or clay-limestone. It is on these Arrábida Hills slopes that the grapes are grown for the famous sweet Moscatel de Setúbal wines.
The climate is Mediterranean, with hot, dry summers and mild but rainy winters. Vineyards in the Serra da Arrábida are cooler, owing to the higher altitude and the proximity of the sea.
There are two DOCs, Setúbal and Palmela. Setúbal is sweet and fortified, made primarily from the Muscat of Alexandria grape. It can be labelled Moscatel de Setúbal when Muscat makes up more than 85 per cent of the blend. It's a very sweet, fragrant wine, with candied orange flavours, floral and raisiny when young, developing nutty, toffeed aromas with maturity. Moscatel Roxo (a pink grape) makes wines that are even more scented.
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