Portugal named Best Wine Region to Visit

Source: http://www.10best.com/awards/travel/best-wine-region-to-visit/

Portugal named Best Wine Region to Visit

British Columbia, Chile, New Zealand, Croatia see top five finishes

The corks are pulled, the votes are in, and readers of USA TODAY and 10Best have passionately voted Portugal’s Alentejo the #1 ‘Best Wine Region to Visit,’ from among 20 worthy nominees.

Our well-travelled expert nomination panel – a wine educator and a wine buyer – made the original selections and then readers voted daily during the contest’s four-week run.  While British Columbia’s Okananagan Valley enjoyed an early lead, fans of Portugal’s appealing Alentejo region eventually assured it took top honors.

The full list of winners in the USA TODAY 10Best Readers’ Choice contest for ‘Best Wine Region to Visit’ contest category is as follows:

  1. Alentejo, Portugal
  2. Okanagan Valley, British Columbia
  3. Maipo, Chile
  4. Marlborough, New Zealand
  5. Croatia
  6. Napa Valley, Calif.
  7. Tuscany, Italy
  8. Oregon
  9. Hunter Valley, Australia
  10. Virginia

The vast Alentejo, stretching to Portugal’s southwestern coast, is still off the radar for many travelers.  This intriguing rural region   is like a trip back in time.  The diverse terrain holds olive groves and vineyards, quaint villages, flower-filled meadows and forests.

“The Alentejo is best known for its hardy red wines made from a unique combination of indigenous varietals,” says Kerry Woolard, who served on the expert panel.  “Now, more familiar vinifera such as Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Petit Verdot are being produced there too.”

The food in Alentejo is rustic and authentic, taking full advantage of the agrarian lifestyle in the area.  You won’t find a developed coastline of hotels;  instead Alentejo’s beaches – considered some of the most dramatic and beautiful in Europe – require visitors to seek out lodging in independent guest houses.  The Alentejo is like a trip back in time for wine lovers.  The Faro and Lisbon airports are each less than two hours away.

British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley came in at a strong #2, its loyal fans reminding voters of the area’s lush landscape of mountains and rivers.  The Okanagan offers excellent opportunities for outdoor recreation in between tastings.

A hearty congratulations to all our winners!


Discover the moorish District of Lisbon with your Local Tour Guide

Discover the unknown neighbourhood of Mouraria (“the Moorish Quarter”), which is definately one of Lisbon´s hidden secrets. With more than 900 years of History is the home of people from 56 different Nationalities being the most multietnic place of the Portuguese capital. It is a place full of secrets, love and life stories that can be discovered through the eyes and of your local Tour Guide.





Type of Tour: Walking Tour

Difficulty: Average 

Duration: Up to 3 Hours

Contact: filipedacruzalves@gmail.com or www.filipealves.com

Hidden sheet music in Hieronymus Bosch triptych recorded by blogger

Hidden sheet music in Hieronymus Bosch triptych recorded by blogger

Notes written on the posterior of one of the many tortured denizens on a panel of The Garden of Earthly Delights has been composed.

The Garden of earthly delights centre panel
The Garden of Earthly Delights centre panel from triptych before 1593 by Hieronymus Bosch Artist: BOSCH, Hieronymus : 1450-1516 The Art Archive / Museo del Prado Madrid / Album/Joseph Martin Photograph: The Art Archive

An enterprising blogger has recorded a piece of music hidden in Hieronymus Bosch’s painting The Garden of Earthly Delights, bringing to life a series of notes that originally appeared on the backside of one of Bosch’s sinners.

Posting on her Tumblr, a self-described “huge nerd” called Amelia explained that she and a friend had been examining a copy of Bosch’s famous triptych, which was painted around the year 1500. “[We] discovered, much to our amusement,” she wrote. “[a] 600-years-old butt song from Hell.”

Once zoomed-in, the object of Amelia’s interest is clear: Bosch left sheet music “written upon the posterior of one of the many tortured denizens of the rightmost panel of the painting”. 

Sheet music in question located in top left corner:
1480-1505. Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain. 
Image by Corbis Photograph: Corbis

“I decided to transcribe it into modern notation,” Amelia explained, “assuming the second line of the staff is C, as is common for chants of this era … The last few measures are kind of obscured but i tried my best.”

The rest is history, really. Amelia posted a piano version of the torture-victim’s backside hymnal. Someone else wrote some silly lyrics (key phrase: “we sing from our asses while burning in purgatory”) and arranged it as choral chant. Soon, each post had received thousands of notes and reposts.

None of this could have been foreseen by Bosch, for whom The Garden Of Earthly Delights was probably a caution against the unending hazards of sin. While music and musical instruments are major motifs of his masterwork, which has long been on display in Madrid, these are often interpreted as symbols of pleasure, lust or the notoriously naughty habits of travelling minstrels.


Source: http://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2014/feb/13/hidden-sheet-music-hieronymus-bosch-triptych-recorded?CMP=fb_gu

Filipe Alves your Official Lisbon Tour Guide

Filipe Alves (www.filipealves.com
My Name is Filipe Alves, I live in Lisbon, the beautiful capital of Portugal since 1256! I am a certified tourist guide of Portugal since 2008 and I guide groups throughout Lisbon’s neighbourhoods, museums, churches, palaces and monuments and all over Portugal in the following languages:​​ English, German, Portuguese, Italian and Spanish.
Email: filipedacruzalves@gmail.com