MOSCATEL DE SETÚBAL TORNA VIAGEM
D.O.C. MOSCATEL DE SETÚBAL
A SECULAR EXPERIENCE OF JOSÉ MARIA DA FONSECA
The story of José Maria da Fonseca´s Torna Viagem starts in the middle of the 19th century. In that era, merchant ships used to sail around the world. The captains of the ships would bring on board, several casks of Moscatel de Setúbal from José Maria da Fonseca and the wine was carried on consignment, with the hope that it would find a suitable buyer overseas. Sometimes, part of the wine had to travel back home and be returned to the company, as the captain hadn’t been successful in selling it, and these casks would then endure once more, the adversities from the seas and the changing weather conditions, with variations of temperature and humidity.
Surprisingly, after opening the casks that had returned at the winery and tasting the wine, it was discovered that the quality of the wine had improved significantly. The passage of the tropics, on the way to Brazil, Africa and India, crossing the equator twice – one the way there and back – improved the quality of the Moscatel de Setúbal, adding more layers of complexity, showing signs of a faster evolution, and the lucky ones that have been able to taste it, were able to identity a touch of saltiness that makes this wine truly unique.
In 2000 José Maria da Fonseca recovered the Torna Viagem with the Portuguese navy ship, Navio Escola Sagres and it´s already in its 9th edition – 2000, 1007, 2010, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2020 (happening right now).