Immediately south of Vinho Verde is the mountainous region of the Douro. The region follows the river with the same name and carries two DOC statuses, one for table wine and one for Port wines. Terraced vineyards are planted along the mountainside, making harvesting a labor-intensive process that requires hand picking of grapes.
The Douro consists of three arid subzones, all of which have extreme temperatures and are protected from rainfall by the adjacent mountains. Starting at the Spain–Portugal border is the Douro Superior zone. This is the largest subzone and is known for producing hearty red wines. Moving west along the Douro River is the Cima (higher) Corgo subzone, which is home to the famous Port vineyards located along the mountainsides of the river.
Continuing west is the smallest subzone, Baixo (lower) Coro. This subzone is the closest to the Atlantic Ocean and receives the most rainfall. The key red varietals grown in the Douro region are Touriga Francesa, Touriga Nacional and Tinta Roriz (also known as Tempranillo). These varietals are used in making both Port and table wines. Wines from the Douro are considered to be among the most elegant reds of Portugal and styled similarly to the elegant wines of Bordeaux.