Rediscovering Madeira Wine

Go to pick your friends up from the airport after they’ve been to Portugal and the chances are they’ll have some authentic Madeira wine somewhere in their luggage. This fortified wine is going through something of surge in popularity and there are a number of reasons why this wine has been given a new lease of life.

Fortified wines were extremely popular in the past for reasons such as the low cost, the high alcohol content and the health benefits. Madeira is one such wine and was popular with past generations looking to bring a taste of the Mediterranean home from their holiday. Production of the wine itself dates back to the 16th century when sugar cane plantations were changed to vineyards on the island of the same name.

Recognized and sold around the world, Madeira wine is back in everyone’s wine cellars. Here’s why:

All the Cool Places are Serving It

Part of this comeback is due to the fact that restaurants are starting to promote Madeira wine again. Sweet Madeira wines are typical but dryer versions, such as Verdelho and Sercial, are once again being served in restaurants to customers looking for high-acid wines with character. Madeira is back on menus as an aperitif, going particularly well with deserts, and is also consumed as a digestif to make digestion that little bit more comfortable.

Madeira the Health Booster

It’s long been known that a glass of red wine is good for you. Many studies have shown that a glass of red per day can prevent blood clots in the arteries and diminish the risk of coronary heart disease. Studies have also illustrated that a glass of red wine can reduce memory loss and prevent certain types of cancer. The Mediterranean diet of fish, fruit, salads and olive oil, not to mention a drop of red wine with meals, is one of the healthiest in the world.

A Little Madeira Love in Cooking

Amateur cooks are discovering the many dishes that they can improve by adding a little Madeira wine love. There are all kinds of recipes online that incorporate Madeira wine as one of the key ingredients. Steaks, chicken, venison and liver dishes can all benefit from the addition of a Madeira wine sauce. Madeira isn’t just a main-course ingredient. Starters and light meals such as French onion soup, and of course Madeira trifle and other deserts, can all be that touch tastier, thanks to a little Madeira.

Long Live Madeira!

One of Madeira wine’s major plus points is its longevity. You can open a bottle and find it still in tip-top condition weeks later, if not months so. The best Madeira wines will have been aged, sometimes for decades. If you still have a bottle of Madeira sitting in the cupboard from that holiday 10 years ago then chances are it’s still ready to drink.

You can cook with it, you can enjoy a healthier diet with it, and you can also follow the fashions in the culinary world if you drink it. Madeira isn’t just an island: it’s a wine and the way forward!

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