After crème de menthe and a return to the 90s in terms of cocktail trends, port is having a moment, again. Fortified wine par excellence and exclusively produced in the stunning Douro Valley in Portugal, it offers astonishing versatility in its pairings, going well beyond traditional chocolate. Which is always nice, that said.

In Quebec, port is often almost synonymous with Cabral, a world-renowned producer that offers a refined selection of vintage wines from the Douro Valley. Each port is carefully vinified and aged to provide a unique taste experience. Discover the subtleties of each style and the possible pairings for their service.

Red port

It is under this dominant colour that we find countless variations, classified under three main categories:
ruby, tawny and vintages.


Ruby is younger,
aged between two
and four years in barrels.


More complex, tawny is aged several years in barrels, hence the age indication on the bottle (10, 20, 30 or more). It is also produced from a blend of vintages.


Vintage comes from the best terroirs and is produced only in the best years. It is aged for two years in barrels but can continue its quest for complexity for several years, even decades in bottle.

What about pairings?

Among the Cabral selection, Tawny 10 Year Old Port, Tawny 20 Year Old, Cabral Tawny Reserva Especial, and Cabral Carácter Reserva Especial all lend themselves to delicious desserts that complement their richness and complexity. Among our favourites: chocolate-hazelnut cupcakes and Nutella tiramisu. These combinations will bring out the deep flavours and subtle aromas of these prized ports.

Nutella TiramisuNutella Tiramisu

To create contrasting pairings and echo the sweetness of port, you can of course also opt for cheeses. Choose firm and salty cheeses, or with hints of hazelnut: Gruyère, aged cheddar, Cantal, Parmesan and blue-veined cheeses like Bleu de Charlevoix are fine choices with tawny.

What about with a meal?

Although rarely served during meals, ports offer interesting possibilities at the table. A barrel-aged ruby ​​port could be surprising with game meat and a sweet sauce. Quail and grapes with a vintage, pan-fried foie gras with spices… These are decadent options, certainly, but delicious and ideal for festive moments.

White and rosé port

Since port is a fortified wine, white and rosé are obtained following the same vinification logic as “regular” wine, meaning white is made from white grape varieties and rosé from red grape varieties, following a short maceration. Some whites can be aged in barrels, while rosé is enjoyed young, but both are served chilled and are very popular in cocktails.

Sett or salty?

White or rosé port allows for different styles of pairing, either as a complement to a dessert or as an opposite, with a savory bite. 

Cod frittersCod fritters

For example, if you opt for a port and tonic cocktail, which is very popular according to customers, white port-based concoctions would go well with cod fritters. On the rosé side, you might enjoy serving your drink with charcuteries. To create these simple yet upscale cocktails, make sure to chill your port between 10°C and 12°C.

Apple crumbleApple crumble

If you opt for something sweet, take advantage of the season to let yourself be seduced by the pairing of Cabral Branco Fino Porto and tarte tatin or apple crumble.

Crème brûlée.Crème brûlée.

For Fine Rosé Port, we suggest crème brûlée and red fruit tarts. In both cases, these subtle combinations will highlight the freshness and fruity flavours of these award-winning ports.

Try these Cabral ports and discover all their subtleties 

Are you a fan of port? Share your pairing ideas and cocktail recipes in the product detailed info. We’d love to know!


In partnership with Cabral, always at the heart of your festive moments.