Filipa Pato

“It would not have crossed my mind to make wine, if I hadn’t lived in a vineyard surrounding” states Filipa Pato, daughter of Luís Pato, one of the best known Portuguese winemakers. But although her decision to join the wine world resulted mainly from her family influence, she confesses that she is fascinated by oenology and the surrounding lifestyle.  “It’s a way to get to travel, of being at one with country life, and living in a world without monotonies and routines where the cycle of nature commands your activities”.

Filipa Pato divides her workload, working for her father’s company, on her own brand (FR wines & sparkling, in the market for 7 years), and for Vinhos Doidos, a company dedicated to exporting wines. The wines she has created for the brands ensaios FP and Lokal, are produced with traditional castes from the Bairrada, Dão and Beiras regions.

Enthusiastic defender of the autochtonal castes, Filipa believes that each caste should be worked in their natural habitat. “It’s a great advantage to cultivate castes that have adapted to a certain area for a long time. Besides, with autochtonal castes one can easily become the reference, as they are not spread round the world. Take Braga for example, it is a caste that would have great difficulty adapting to any other region in the world, as it requires very specific conditions in order to reap it’s maximum potential”.

Filipa likes to point out the advantage of the regions in which she works, as they allow her to make “balanced wines (in the acidity, alcohol, and body) which go well with gastronomy”. According to Filipa, one of her complications is actually the limited quantity of wine that she produces which sometimes sells out in some markets. One of her wine selling tricks is to travel: “I notice that when I travel I don’t have enough wine to sell, and that when I don’t I don’t sell any wine”.

Filipa considers that promoting Portuguese wines abroad is fundamental. “Promoting the quality of the wines and the diversity of the castes is important, because in the end, you are promoting the country and good quality tourism, which in turn will increase the consumption of the good quality wines and products which exist in Portugal”.

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