DALVA Golden White...a UNIQUE Port category !

Despite the enormous dedication in all of our Port wines, in C. da SILVA / DALVA we´ve a UNIQUE Port category... the C. da SILVA / DALVA Golden White´s.
C. da SILVA / DALVA´s flagship... most of the people a little bit spread out in all over the world never heard about White Ports, or, if they had, probably the blending Whites with no more than three years old, but this exceptional (Golden White) White Port "Colheita"... turned that chapter forever.
A carefull selection of grapes gives a unique style to this single harvest wine, a 50 cl "Golden Nugget".
Decades of evaporation have concentrated this extraordinary wine almost to an essence.
Enormous complexity in aroma and flavours, it is a pleasure to be discovered by PORT LOVERS !

A public recognition of our Ports quality, it is a honor and a privilege, a very important argument in the presentation to new customers.

UNIC and RARE in ...this category. Made exclusively only with white grapes.
Nowadays our Cellar only makes the Dalva Golden White 1952 bottling by request, allowing the continuity ageing process of the DALVA Golden White 1952 in small french oak casks.
It presents us with a outstanding " bouquet", brutal acidity, it surprises any Portwine expert, due to the complexity, refined quality and a lingering finish.
Dry fruit shell, nougat, honey, caramel, vanilla, toffee, expresso, cigar box, butterscotch, caramelised orange, stewed figs... Toasted with an amazing silky texture...
Nowadays, also with an extraordinary sucess C. da SILVA / DALVA has the Golden White 1963, with a distinctive vision into the Port wine trade C. da SILVA / DALVA will continue with the Golden White´s heritage.
A long commitment, of releasing a Golden White per decade !

Gonçalo Devesas


Horchata de Chufa with DALVA´s Colheita  1967 reduction
A delicious combination of Dalva Colheita 1967 paired with Chufas de Foie Gras.
Ingredients: Foie Gras | Horchata | Trufles, Colheita 1967 reduction and Cocoa.

What is Horchata de Chufa?
Answer: "Horchata is a popular, refreshing drink consumed in Spain during the hot summers. It is made from the tubers of the nut sedge plant and in Spanish these are called chufas, hence the name horchata de chufa. Horchata has a white, milky appearance and is served ice cold."

Tiramisú with DALVA´s LBV 2005 reduction
A delicious combination of Dalva LBV 2005, a very fleshy and pulpy port wine, paired with Tiramisú made with figs, fresh cheese, LBV 2005 reduction and almond ice cream.

Dried furits Sabayon 1967
Dried fruits sabayon 1967


2 egg yolks
10cl of DALVA Colheita 1967 Rui Paula
3 teaspoons with sugar
2 almonds
2 hazelnuts
10 seeds
10 raisins
10 grapes


Crush the nuts in a bulk. Add the grapes, 1 teaspoon with sugar, 5cl of DALVA Colheita 1967 Rui Paula and melt it in a nonstick frying pan.
Prepare the sabayon joining the 2 egg yolks, 2 spoons with sugar and 5cl of DALVA Colheita 1967 Rui Paula. Flap it well with cooking rods in water bath until obtain a homogeneous foam and evaporate the alcohol.
Place the caramelized fruit cocktail in a bowl and pour over the sabayon.
Serve with DALVA Colheita 1967 Rui Paula  at 13°C.


Place the caramelized fruit cocktail in a bowl and pour over the sabayon.
Serve with DALVA Colheita 1967 Rui Paula  at 13°C.

Gonçalo Devesas


                            The first blended Port of a chef released to the market, was a... DALVA.

Mr. Rui Paula, the great portuguese chef, responsible for the amazing restaurants: DOC in Folgosa (the Douro Valley) and recently the DOP in the heart of Porto...

This fabulous DALVA Colheita 1967 Rui Paula, aged in small french oak pipes, it is a special, limited, numbered and signed edition of 500 bottles.

After being the first chef doing a partnership with a Port wine Cellar - C. da Silva (Vinhos) SA, the chef Rui Paula won the INOVATION PRIZE at the 1st event of the Portuguese brotherhoods at Casino da Figueira da Foz.

The recognition of a total dedication to the Douro promotion by offering the highest quality in the service, elegant décor, cousy atmosphere and a rainbow of flavors and sensations...

Congratulations !

Gonçalo Devesas

DALVA Port wines... The DISTINCTIVE releases.

In order to distinguish our products of choice, we created the brand DALVA, a fortunate name, easy to pronounce in all languages whose origin lies in the founder´s surname DA si LVA.

With a wide range of Colheita and white Port wines; arises a visionary innovation by inviting Portuguese chefs for the exclusive and limited Port wine editions; by launching the Rosé; the Moscatel and twenty five years after the Douro DOP table wines... finally, the Golden Whites (Golden White 1952 and Golden White 1963), a serious investment in the launch of a rare White Colheita per decade.

C. da Silva wines are the culmination of a zealous vigilance during their aging process and the careful monitoring of quality by the most respected Winemakers in technologically advanced laboratories.

Our Sorcerer/Winemaker, Manuel Sousa Soares (left side)
The investment on research and new creative processes are also requirements for an elite product, available to a very few, with limited numbered and signed editions.

Examples of this are the partnerships with leading cooking Chefs of the national cuisine, like Rui Paula and Miguel Castro e Silva.

A real uniqueness in the area of Port wine, plain or accompanied by gourmet suggestions.

C. da Silva will always be internationally recognized as the first Port Wine Cellar launching the Golden Whites (the worldwide famous Golden White 1952), the DALVA Colheita 1967 Rui Paula and amazing but true, the best-seller in our shop... DALVA Lote Miguel Castro Silva, a half dry White with fifteen years old, wich has been really delighting our visitors.

DALVA Lote Miguel Castro Silva
Gonçalo Devesas

La Martiniquaise

A traditional Port wine firm founded in 1862 under the name Correa Ribeiro & Filhos, but it was in 1957 that the Company´s registration has been changed to: C. da Silva (Vinhos) S.A.

The Company has been family owned till 1980, after Mr. Clemente da Silva´s death, the family has decided to sell the Company, that has been bought by the spanish group Nueva Rumasa.

In 2007 it has been bought again by Gran Cruz Porto (1st worldwide), making part of La Martiniquaise (2nd Spiritis Group in France).
La Martiniquaise ownes Porto Cruz (leading product on the french market), and different spirits / brands, like:

Wiskies: Label 5
               Glen Turner
               Old Virginia
               Sam Barton
Port wine:
                Porto Cruz
Madeira wine:
                Justino Henriques
White Spirits:
                 Poliakov Vodka
                 Gibson´s Gin
                 Tiscaz Tequila
                 Anis Gras

The creation of La Martiniquaise has began in 1934, its prime activity was the importation and the distribution of Rum. After World War II the boom of this Company, the founder Mr. Jean Cayard started innovating and diversifying the range of products.

Nowadays, La Martiniquaise is a Company with international dimension, that has now nearly 1500 employees, 18 ageing centers, 15 subsidiaries and 165 millions of bottles on ageing stock, being the leading Company Worlwide for Port wine, Madeira, Rum of the Antilles, Armagnac and Calvados.

As an independent Group of Companies the lemma is the full dedication to offer the best quality available to all.         

Gonçalo Devesas

C. da Silva or DALVA ?

A very important issue that needs to be clarified…

During this last year that C. da SILVA opened the Port and Douro wine shop, many people have been making these questions:

“Do you have a new brand… C. da SILVA ? I have only heard about DALVA."
“Are you changing the name of the brand from DALVA to C. da SILVA ?"
"The reason of a rebranding and new packaging is related with this change ?"

Well C. da SILVA (VINHOS) SA is our Company´s trading registry, although this Company was founded in 1862, under the name Corrêa Ribeiro e Filhos and carried the seal bearer of long time supplier to the Royal House.

But as a result of reasons lost in time, Mr. Clemente da SILVA (the founder) opted between 1933 and 1957 for changing the Company´s name.

C. da SILVA´s (VINHOS) SA major brand is DALVA, a name whose origin lies in the founder´s surname DA si LVA.

Therefore in the rebranding, below the bottles neck,  the first symbol (Mr. Clemente da SILVA side view) followed by the words (C. da SILVA), then our lemma "Distinctive Port" and the Company´s brand name... DALVA.

PRESIDENTIAL...another brand owned by C. da Silva (Vinhos) SA, that has been created for Export markets, like United States of America, Germany, Spain...

The same Port wine as in DALVA bottles but different presentation and packaging.

Gonçalo Devesas

A Charismatic Port Wine Cellar

C. da Silva (Vinhos) S.A. is a traditional Port wine Cellar, established in 1862, under portuguese registration (Corrêa Ribeiro & Filhos), and as carried the seal of long time supplier to the Portuguese Royal House.

Driven by the ambition of creating a sucessful export business, Mr. Clemente da Silva, a portuguese young man that had just arrived from Brazil in 1933.

Mr. Clemente da Silva inherited the Company through his marriage and has fulfilled a lifetime dream by starting the business from scratch, as well as the initial Port wine reserves, doing it according to his own expectations.

The Founder... Mr. Clemente da Silva

In 1957 the Company´s registration has been changed for: C. da Silva (Vinhos) S.A.

The Company has been family owned till 1980, after Mr. Clemente da Silva´s death, the family has decided to sell the Company, that has been bought by the spanish group Nueva Rumasa.

In 2007 it has been bought again by Gran Cruz Porto (1st worldwide), making part of La Martiniquaise (2nd Spiritis Group in France).

Since the very beginning that the main goal of this visionary man was the uniqueness of the Port and filling the niche of the Port wine sector.
Our most prestigious Ports on that time: DALVA Rare Old Vintage 1896; DALVA Vintage 1917;

Currently, our most prestigious Ports: DALVA Vintage 1970; DALVA Golden White 1952 and DALVA Golden White 1963.
Nowadays it as the most beautiful headquarters of the Port wine trade, a 18th century mansion surrounded by 10,000 square meters of warehouses, that has been owned by the family, it as been renewed, but mantaining the same façades and the historical tiles, the spring... the 18th century brazilian style.

C. da Silva´s headquarters, a Mansion dated from the 18th century

Currently C. da Silva is internationaly recognized for the quality of its Ports, namely a wide range of White Ports and Colheita "Single Harvest Tawny), showing all the respect of a dedicated staff and a passionated Managenement.
2900 seasoned french oak pipes (250 ltrs to 750 ltrs)
Gonçalo Devesas

C. da Silva´s Port & Wine shop... a dream come true.

The first days of a mandatory place...C. da Silva Port & Wine shop, testing everything, filling the shelves... it was the 2010 summer countdown.

The beginning...
Nowadays...nothing could ever be more rewarding than seeing delighted people coming back this 2011 summer for more C. da Silva experiences.

C. da Silva Port wine shop is located in the heart of the historical area of Vila Nova de Gaia, in the main avenue along the Douro river.

A stylish concept
C. da Silva Port wine shop is a stylish and comfortable space with an elegant décor and relaxed atmosphere, ideal for wine tastings

We offer you an exceptional range of Ports to taste. All the wines are available to take home, or otherwise , we can deliver it for you!

Interested in knowing more about Port ?

One of the many C. da Silva experiences
Visit us, we´re waiting for you! Parking facilities nearby.

Gonçalo Devesas

The native grape varietals

There is a wide range of grape varietals in the Demarcated Douro region, in the north of Portugal.
These grape varietals have adapted to different climate conditions, and micro-climates... the terroir ability to offer optimal conditions to wines.

The native varietals have been grafted with different types of rootstocks since that philoxera (pest that destroyed most of the vineyards all over Europe) reached to Portugal in 1865.
This process has been done according to their compatibility with different types of roots and the characteristics of the soil in which the vines were planted.

The cultivation of the different types of vines is regulated by a Decret-Law, that lists all the authorized varietals, the  recommended ones and percentages.

Nowadays, winemakers and oenologues have opted for about fifteen white grape varietals (for example: Malvasia Fina, Viosinho, Donzelinho, Rabigato, Côdega, Gouveio...) and about fourteen of red grapes varitals (for example: Touriga Nacional, Touriga Francesa, Tinta Roriz, Tinto Cão, Tinta Amarela, Tinta Barroca...)

The maximum authorized yield is 5500 litres/ha - 7500kg/ha, but anually the average per hectare is aproximately 3000 litres/ha - 4100kg/ha.

Gonçalo Devesas

Douro Wine region... World Heritage !

The Alto Douro Wine Region, has been inscribed as World Heritage in December 2001, one of the three pre marked areas of the Douro region that represents 110.000hect of the vast Demarcated Douro Region (250.000hect).
In 1756 the “Marques de Pombal” restricted the Douro Valley region with 335 milestones, distributed along 250.000 hec. ,making it the oldest defined and protected wine region in the world.

A living landscape where generations of men have been working for years and years, blasting the shale, revolving the land, planting the vines, creating the terraces that surround us through hills ... a feat rewarded with a “honorable mention” for the first demarcated region in the world with three pre marked areas.

Row upon row of walls; paths; vineyards... all the pieces of a perfect puzzle
 A unique landscape, with a lot to discover, such as the Estates, the stairways to heaven (slopes), the terraces, the paths, the vineyards, the olive groves, wathercourses, quays and railways.
An amazing scenarium when seen from the top of a slope, where the incredible designed rows of walls is the most important highlight of the landscape, as it makes us reflect upon the meaning of the hard work that went into their construction.

Therefore our Port wine is the pure reflection of the Douro in the diversity of native varietals and a unique terroir.

Gonçalo Devesas

Vintage declarations

The most prestigious category, representing about 2% of the annual production of each Shipper.
The grapes must be picked from vines graded with A and B quality, and should be bottled between July 1 of the second year and June 30 of the third year posterior to the harvest.

After fermentation the Port wines are selected and then kept to age in huge oak vats, samples are then sent to the IVDP - (Port Wine Institute) for tastings and thousands of chemical analysis made annualy.

If the Port wine Company received approval that the wine will be certified as a Vintage, others Cellars/brands will be consulted and the market conditions studied in order to declare the previous year as a traditional Vintage, being classified as a fabulous year for most of the shippers.

Still the Vintage will be quite different from a House to another, because of the micro climate, the House style and vinification process...

It is with the Vintage that Port Houses are still using the granite tanks (5,000ltrs to 8,000ltrs)  for the foot trodden, where the men, usualy vineyard workers that will be doing the treading sessions for about three hours during the night.

Gonçalo Devesas

After the harvest...till being served in your glass.

Usually the young Port wines are kept in Quinta dos Avidagos, our vinification center (located in Alvações do Corgo, close to Régua - the Douro valley) for their first winter before being brought down the Douro river, where the lower temperatures and higher humidity is better for the Port´s maturation.

In our Cellars with 10,000 square meters, the Port matures in very old seasoned oak casks called pipas (pipes).
During this amazing aging process it will be tasted regularly by our winemakers or oenologues, to assess its quality.

Our Ports will gradually mellow in an oxidative process "angels share", with this process (Tawny Port) we are losing about 2% to 3% of Port annualy, achieving a nutty and amber hue and an incredible taste based in dry fruits shell, toffee, cigar box, coffee, stewed figs, bitter chocolate hints... softness and an elegant delayed after taste.

Since 1862 that C. da Silva, a traditional Port wine House, has been driven by the ambition of presenting the higher quality, namely for the "Colheita" and Aged Tawnies.

Devotion and passion a full time commitment

The Aged Tawny matures in oak for long and variable periods of time, in which the age indicated on the label corresponds to the approximate average of several Colheita Port wines in the blend.
Highlighting its long aging in seasoned oak, the Tawny with thirty or over fourty years old will present a golden color with greenish tints, evolving, reaching a bouquet which brings out the very complex aroma.

Depending on the desire to preserve Port´s longevity in the bottle, or for immediate consumption, it is very important to know the temperature range, bottling date and recommended storage period after opening.

Above all, you should not feel shy and do it relaxed when it comes the time to enjoy the extraordinary range of DALVA´s Port wines.

Gonçalo Devesas

C. da Silva / DALVA´s Golden path

The uniqueness of the Golden Whites has started long time ago with the Imperial White Port - Special Reserve Vintage 1917.

The last oak cask of a myth - DALVA Golden White 1952

C. da Silva has carried the seal of long time supplier to the Royal House, therefore the reason of the word "Imperial" in the label of the very old Ports that emerged in the first two decades of the twentieth century.

Ageing White Port wines from a single harvest in small french oak casks has been since the very beginning our devoted quest for a distinctive Port.

It was the reputation of this wines, DALVA Golden White 1952 and recently the DALVA Golden White 1963, that made C. da Silva an internationaly recognized Port Company, wich has earned several and prestigious prizes.

The first DALVA White Colheita harvested in 1917
Blended and single harvest Port wines ageing permanently in 2900 seasoned french oak casks, with about 250 to 730 liters, till their bottling date.

Currently the Golden White path is a very serious and long commitment for the dedicated staff and the passionated management, recognized worldwide since 2005, with more surprises to come when we just reached less than 400 liters of the liquid gold.

DALVA Golden White 1952

No no... you may take a deep breath, the DALVA Golden White 1952 will not be bottled in a flask.

Since the very beginning the main goal of this traditional Port wine Company was, is and will be, to conquer a market of authentic and unique Port.

Gonçalo Devesas

TEAM DALVA...recovering traditions.

DALVA´s cocktail party at the river front
2th of June 2011… at the sunset, in the riverfront, near to C. da Silva wine shop, we promoted a cocktail party with the DALVA Dry white and the Rosé, for the TEAM DALVA.

C. da Silva is sponsoring a racing team in the Fiat Uno national championship.

DALVA´s racing car
Motor racing has been a family (C. da Silva) tradition since the late sixties...

Clemente Ribeiro da Silva (Mr. C. da Silva´s son) was born in 1943, a very creative person, he revealed since his youth a innate ability to draw, aware of this ability, Clemente Ribeiro da Silva, known for his nickname “Kiko”… began to design his favourite racing cars.
In the late sixties, a dream became true,  Kiko started racing.
But it was in 1971 that Kiko started to become well known to the big audience, being  4th in the national championship, driving a Datsun 1200, and sponsored by DALVA.
Because of this amazing initiation, Kiko raced for TEAM DALVA, with many other racing cars, like…Toyota Corolla 1200 S KE20; Opel Commodore GS/E; Mini cooper; Porsche Carrera RSR and Alfa Romeo 2000 GTV.
In 1977 on the wheel of an Alfa Romeo 2000 GTV, Kiko ran in a unlucky race, in Estoril.
Mechanical problems forced him to park the car near to the finish line, he has waited next to the rail till all competitors crossed the finish line.
"Kiko" da Silva at the wheels of an Opel Commodore GS/E 
The winner of this 500km race in Estoril was the Italian Humberto Grano driving a BMW 3.0 CSL, that because of a breakdown in the alternator was racing without lights, Humberto didn´t see the finish line flag and was still in race mode, due to this, Kiko crossed the race track and the worst happened.
A unusual accident in the national motoring.
A visionary, a friend… a great pilot.
Now recovering another tradition, C. da Silva is back to the racing tracks…

Gonçalo Devesas


Port a national symbol !

Port wine was, and is, a key product for the National economy and even more a symbolic asset that represents Port througout the world.

The designation Port wine appeared during the second half of the 17th century due to an incredible expansion of Douro viticulture and a rapid growth in wine exports.

It all began in 1680, on that time there were political diferences between the french prime minister, Colbert and King Charles II from UK.

These political diferences led both countries to the Augsburg battle in 1688, forcing the british royalty to send merchants seeking for alternative wine sources, Italy, Spain but most of all the North of Portugal.

As the brithish people´s taste started to become more sofisticated, the merchants went into the core of the Douro valley where the quality was amazing.

In 1703 the Methuen treaty, for the wine exports Portugal was paying 2/3 of the exportation fees to U.K. while on the other hand Portugal was buying the textiles from the british.

Between 1710 and 1740, the Port era, the ships departed from Porto, that was a very important seaport located in the mouth of the Douro river heading towards England and abroad.
In England there were merchants with wagons pulled by horses waiting to load the oak casks, afterwards they would go to the castles and in the private cellars or warehouses the merchants staff would made the bottling.
Port was not a nobility drink, people drank Port in the taverns with a mug directly from the casks.

Elderberry and sugar were added to wine and everyone wanted to become a grape grower, so the quality decreased.
In order to stop with a lack of both quality and territorial coordination, in 1756 the portuguese prime minister, the Marquis de Pombal, ordered the distribution of 335 milestones along 250000hects.

Nowadays there are 45700hects cultivated and 39100 grape growers, Port is strictly controlled by the Port wine Institute inspectors and thousands of chemical analysis annualy made, before each Port producer gets the bottling approval.

Gonçalo Devesas

The 2011 harvest in the demarcated Douro region

This year the harvest in the Douro valley started ten to fifteen days earlier than it is usual in the Douro valley due to a mix of both hot and semi-cold weather, that also decreased the quantity in less 30%.

The normal procedure is to start the picking of white grapes in the end of August beginning of September and one week after the red grapes, but this year the maturation process was faster.

The vines were also affected by the intense heat in the last days of June that damaged some of the more delicated grape varietals, mildew and insect attacks forced the grape growers and the producers to apply more products in order to protect the vineyards.

The three heat periods that occurred between April and May accelerated the growth cycle of the vines. Then, the temperatures in July and in the first fifteen days of August were lower allowing the plants to work faster and more constant, avoiding the water stress what will be reflected in a better quality of the Port and wine.

Worldwide crisis has been forcing the IVDP (Port wine Institute) to reduce the Port wine production.
In 2001- the maximum allowed were 145000 casks (79.500000liters) used for the "benefício" (the process of adding a distilled grape spirit in order to stop the fermentation and boost the alcohol content).
Currently for 2011 the maximum allowed is 85000 casks of wine (46.750000 liters), in about ten years there was a decrease of 45%.

Gonçalo Devesas

Drinking Port is the best choise !

When turning a bottle, we always see on the back label "contains sulfites", well the natural sulfites quantity in the wine is about 10mg/ltr.

But the producers use the sulfites in the grapes to avoid the fungus, after the fermentation process as a hygienic solution, during the claryfing process and before the bottling.

There are some producers that are trying to make only a natural wine, but it is too difficult, because the sulfites work as an anti-oxidant and wine preservative, so the wine will be very fragile and with an awful presentation without it, this is still for personal comsuption.

Per liter in a bottle of red wine we have 160mg/ltr; for white wine 260mg/ltr; untill 300mg/ltr for fortified wines like Moscatel and 400mg/ltr for a Late harvest.

According to World Healthcare Organization, it is particulary dangerous for a person with asthma.
The maximum daily quantity of sulfites is 0,7mg/ per kilo of body weight per day...ex. for a person with 70 kilos the maximum value (daily) 49mg/ltr.

In a bottle of Port there is an average of 60/70mg/ltr, (and speaking about bottles with 75cl content) so that lead us to about 45mg/ltr in a bottle of Port and saying it briefly.

In short drinking Port is the best choise...always with moderation.

One of many great experiences at C. da Silva Port & Wine shop
Gonçalo Devesas

How the Port wine grapes are rated ?

How the Port wine grapes are rated ?

# Slope gradient - vineyards planted in flat properties do not receive any points, but the vineyards planted in a slope incline with more than 35 degrees will receive a very good rating;
# Stony ground - having a lot of shale in the property is very important, for a gradual moisture; to retain more water during the winter and the contact with it will help to spread a important quantity of minerals for the vines; to maintain a constant micro-climate (during the day the shale is a rock that absorves a lot of heat and during the night will reflect the warmth to the vineyards);
# Age and quality of the vineyards/grapes - At least a Port wine vineyard must have a minimum of 5 years, but for a very good classification it starts in 26 years; also the grapes are now rated by their own characteristics;
# Planting density - Per hectare a huge vineyard plantation is very good to avoid the "vineyard stress", but for Port wine is very good between 4500 vines till 5000 vines, with a quantity in liters 3000ltrs (average) and 5500ltrs (maximum allowed per hectare) this allows less quantity but better quality;
# Protection - Narrow Valley locations and river estuaries are very important because while protecting the vineyards from the strong and cold winds, it can be hotter than the higher places (slopes top);
# Exposition - In the cooler areas it is very important a good southern exposure, of course that for the hotter areas it´s a handicap. Depending on the weather conditions, there is a ability (a great one, nowadays) for a 2nd pruning level (on the leafs and during the spring and summer), because the grapes need to be protected by the direct sun, but at the same time they need to receive enough sunlight and warmth for fotosynthesis and nutrients.

Unloading the Port wine grapes in C. da Silva vinification center


A >1200 points

B between 1001 and 1200 points

C between 801 and 1000 points

D between 601 and 800 points

E between 401 and 600 points

F between 201 and 400 points

A and B quality are the one´s used in the Vintage Port, Vintage Port represents in average less than 2% of each Port wine Company´s annual production.

Gonçalo Devesas

Last bottles of DALVA Golden White 1952

Hello Port Lovers,

As you all know the amazing Golden White 1952 / Dalva Colheita is arriving to the end (unfortunately) less than 400 liters.  A myth ! The first white Port Colheita that really changed the way that people used to look to White Port.

Golden White 1952 oak cask...the last of a classic !
Before that White Port wine was considered the baseline of Port wines range, used for a cocktail or mixed with tonic water in a tumbler with a lemon slice and a mint leaf...refreshing but not respected.

The DALVA Golden White 1952 is undoubtedly the White Ports flagship, turning the page of a old book in people´s mind.
Decades of evaporation have concentrated this extraordinary wine almost to an essence.

UNIC and RARE in this category.
Made exclusively with white grapes.
Nowadays C. da Silva Cellar only makes the Dalva Golden White 1952 bottling by request, allowing the continuity ageing process of the Golden White in the unique oak cask.
It presents us with a outstanding " bouquet", dry fruit shell, nougat, honey, caramel, vanilla, toffee, smoke, tobacco and iodine... Toasted with a amazing silky texture...

This is probably the last chance to get this legendary Port !

(For further informations: wineshop@cdasilva.pt or visit us at http://www.cdasilva.pt/ )

Gonçalo Devesas

How to taste Port ?

The basic is using a 210ml glass (the official Port wine glass) and pouring about 100/50ml;

» look for clarity and brightness;
» it´s easier to immerse your nose in a Bourdeaux glass (tulip shape) in the remaining room space;
» after just smell it without making the whirlpool, because like this you´ll be able to pick up the volatile aromatics, then swirl it to enhance the stronger aromas.(fruity/mineral/vegetal/floral/spicy character);
» the first sip always with a nice quantity, to ventilate and release the flavors (fruity/mineral/vegetal/floral/spicy character)and to define the thickness, the viscosity, acidity, adstrigency... after swallow it, start to define the aftertaste duration by counting the seconds that you fell it in mouth...
DALVA´s Tawny Over 40 years old
Nevertheless, you should not feel shy and do it relaxed when it comes the time to enjoy the extraordinary DALVA´s Port.

A Port milestone !

The barco rabelo (a small skiff used for the Port transportation) loaded with 40 to 50 pipes, that on that time (17th century), due to whirpools, exaggerated weight and strong tides it sank for lots of times during those brave journeys.

DALVA´s boat at the end of the annual race
In 1887 with the railway construction, the Rabelo started to be less used.
Since the 16th century till May 1971 (when the last tryp was made) there were constructed about 300 skiffs on total.

Nowadays the transportation is made by cistern trucks, but without the Rabelo, on that time it would be impossible to transport Port to the important seaport where we have now the Port wine cellars... and ship it to England and abroad.

By now we are still able so see the Rabelo skiffs on a race exhibition on St. John´s day (24 of June) or even anchored along the lodges shore.

Using C. da Silva Port Tongs

How to decant Vintage Port ?
The main objective is to enhance the tasting, from its visual appearance, taste and aroma. First of all, some accessories needed... a decanter washed with mineral water, a piece of cheesecloth, a funnel, Port tongs, water and a stove.

C. da Silva Port tongs
The traditional way is to leave the bottle standing up for a couple of days and pull out the protective cap and the cork without twisting or moving the bottle. (In the case of Vintage Port with some decades of aging, where excessive moisture causes wear of the stopper, should be used Port tongs).

First step is to place the iron side of the Port tongs into the hot stove, until it turn incandescent, than just need to put it 1 cm above the cork, firmly, about 60 to 90 seconds, take it off and than a little bit of water will cause the instant reaction, by breaking itself. Grabbing the bottle, gently, start to poor it for the decanter, that on the top will have the cheesecloth inside of the funnel, ensuring that the finer and smaller sediments and eventually glass will spend to the decanter.
DALVA Vintage 1994
This ceremony not only keeps the Port drinkable for 3 or 4 days but will also aerate the nectar.
As a extremely quality wine, the Port will continue to evolve in the glass, that if possible should the official Port wine glass, designed in 2001 by Álvaro Siza Vieira (the most famous portuguese architect).

As an pairing for Vintage, desserts made with red fruits, blue or spicy cheeses, dark chocolate and game. Serving between at 16ºC to 18ºC.

Gonçalo Devesas

DALVA Imperial Port wine

The uniqueness of the Golden Whites has started long time ago with the Imperial White Port Special Reserve Vintage 1917.

C. da Silva has carried the seal of long time supplier to the Royal House, therefore the reason of the word "Imperial" in the label of  the very old Ports that emerged in the first two decades of the twentieth century.
Since the very beginning the main goal of this traditional Port wine Company was to conquer a market of unusual, authentic and distintive Port.

It was the reputation of this wines that made C. da Silva a well known Port Company, wich has earned several prizes from that time untill nowadays.

Blended and single harvest Port wines aging permanently in 2900 oak casks, with about 250 to 730 liters, untill their bottling date.


Following the enormous success of the DALVA DOC Branco RESERVA 2009, C. da Silva launched the DALVA SUNRISE Colheita 2010 a light, fresh and very aromatic wine ideal for an aperitif and combined with salads or grilled fish.

Fabulous 3D presentation with two overlaped labels.

Nevertheless...more to come, remember... after the SUNRISE there´s always the ???

The DALVA SUNSET Reserva 2010... structure, massive complexity and freshness with floral aromas, perfect for any moment !!
Complex, with a aromatic wealth, evokes moments of contemplation and sharing and the magic of the appearance of the stars.

The overlaped labels where inspired in the Douro valley, the river, the slopes, the stairways to heaven...a rainbow of colors.

Bottles ilustrated by the artistic eye of the Master Julio Resende, contemplating the Douro.

The Rabelo´s boat race

Every year on St. John´s day (June 24th), it takes place a official initiative of the Port wine Brotherhood, all the Port wine brands compete in a race with the ancient "rabelo" boat, that was the old transportation for the Port wine barrels, in those brave journeys from the Douro Valley till Vila Nova de Gaia.
(CEO´s of each cellar make part of the crew too)

These boats were replaced by train and cistern trucks in May 1971, now we may see the old "rabelo" skiff in the Douro river only for decor.
The race started in Afurada´s seaport and the finish line was in Ribeira, near to the bridge of  D. Luís, in front of the Port wine warehouses, both shores of the Douro river were crowded, thousands of people.
The 27th race had a special moment, it was the first time that DALVA´s boat was racing, side by side with it´s partner the GRAN CRUZ´s boat.

This year the winner was CALÉM, nice race !!!

The french oak casks.

The emblematic coopers room at C. da Silva´s cellar.
Nowadays a slice of C. da Silva´s history...where we keep the old staves, the cooper´s tools, the fire place used to smoke and reduce the thickness of the french oak casks...

C. da Silva´s coopers room

From the thickness of the wood to the braces that mould the staves, one of the secrets of our wines lays in the barrels that store the Port wine, handcrafted by wise cooper masters.

Toasting the french oak casks

The quality of the oak it´s also very important – french oak is considered the best one, but the majority of the barrels are made with portuguese oak or chestnut, but for our Port maturation we only use seasoned french oak.

To make  a first quality barrel you need to wait one century for the tree to grow and 3 years more to smoke and dried it, it´s the reason that normally the flavor of caramel is easy to pick in a tawny ( small amounts of sugar in the oaks cells ), normally when we are thinking about buying a 30y old tawny, a Over 40y old tawny or even a old Colheita ( single year tawny ) and we consider the price expensive, it´s always very important, to keep in mind some of the highest quality factors...

Port... a wine with over 300 years of history...

In order to preserve the quality of the Port wine, quality control has became the responsibility of the Institute of Port Wine (IVDP) since 1934.
The wines were no longer exported from the Douro valley and would be subject to tight control on the shores of Vila Nova de Gaia, which was an obligatory passage point.

An IVDP inspector checking C. da Silva Port wines at Vila Nova de Gaia

All wines destined to the exporter´s warehouses, were inspected after leaving the "Rabelo" boat, (a traditional skiff used for the Port wine transportation).

In 1942 was created the seal of approval, as part of each bottle.
IVDP´s lab was completely renovated in 1990 and in 1994 was certified by the Portuguese Institute of Quality. On average, annualy, 5000 samples are taken and about 130 000 analysis made. Analysis made ​​to acidity, ph, reducing sugars, density, color characteristics, sulfur dioxide...

DALVA Moscatel do Douro

DALVA moscatel from Douro...produced with a single grape varietal, the moscatel galego, picked 500m over the sea level in the upland of Alijó (the Douro valley) the result...floral aromas and an impressive richness in taste.

DALVA Moscatel do Douro

The blended average is about five years old, floral aromas...lychee, lavender, raisins, citrus... it is perfect for this summer season.
A very complex and refreshing fortified wine with 17% alc. by volume.
Specially when combined with appetizers and fruits / vanilla - based ice creams.
It should be consumed within a week.
Serving temperature 10º C to 12º C.
The advisable is to serve it at 10º C.

DALVA Brandy VSOP (Very Special Old Pale)

After the grapes are pressed, the juice is left to ferment for two or three weeks, the alcohol content should be about 7% to 8%.
Distillation takes place in an alembic, two distillations must be done, resulting in a distilled grape spirit, with a translucent color, of about 70% alcohol.
Dalva Brandy V.S.O.P. will be aged in oak for at least twenty five years (average) before it can be sold to the public. As the Brandy interacts with the oak barrel and the air, it evaporates (about 3% a year) losing alcohol and water.
Because the alcohol evaporates faster than water, it will reach to 40% alcohol by volume when released to the market.

Brandy categories:
  • VS Very Special, or ✯✯✯ (three stars) - the youngest brandy used in the blend is stored at least two years in cask.
  • VSOP Very Special Old Pale - the youngest brandy used in the blend is stored at least four years in cask, with a much older average.
  • XO Extra Old, the youngest brandy used in the blend is stored at least ten years in cask, the average should be older than twenty years.

C. da SILVA cellar

Our cellar... exceeding 10.000 square meters, around C. da Silva´s Mansion, whose roots go back to the middle of the XIX century.
Currently the mansion is used for the company headquarters, with a single and unique charisma in the Port wine trade.

Here we have about 3000 seasoned french oak pipes 538/550 liters, acquired from the Bordeaux ageing, of wich have their origin in the middle of the last century.
Nowadays only used for the finest Colheita Ports of the following years... 1934/1940/Golden White 1952/Golden White 1963/1966/1967/1968/1975/1977/1982/1985/1990/1991/1992/1995/1997/1999/2000...

Some of our very old vintage bottles...there are some 280.000 bottles of famous Vintage years in our cellar.
Of course that the ones in the picture belong to C. da Silva´s private collection, are being kept in a luxurious dungeon