The New Port Wine Museum in Porto, Portugal, opened the 5th of March. The Museum focuses on the relationship between the city and the Port wine. With entrances both through Reboleira street and the bacalhoeiros wall, it is a restored building with five floors
The -1 and -2 floors will work as a bar, with a thoughtful programming and wine tastings. The 0, 1, 2 and 3 floors will function as a museum, for the municipality’s exclusive collections.
Each floor has its own theme. The ground floor tells city’s history, as well as the wine’s. The first floor is about the river: element which enters all of the museum’s floors through the windows. The second floor, filled with old weights and measurements, shows the old gauging or measuring instruments. Finally, the history of the councilmen occupies the last floor.
The Deputy Mayor of Porto for Culture, Guilherme Blanc, says that the museum is part of the project Museu da Cidade (city museum) and talks about its importance for the municipality: “It is a very important museum that integrates in the Museu da Cidade (city museum) project. It will be one of the main centers of this city museum that is being restructured and revisited. I think it’s a starting point to understand the wine culture. People can go from here to the Douro to visit the cellars. It is a museological project that launches clues to understand the relationship between the city and the region with the wine.
Guilherme Blanc reminds us that there was already a Port wine museum , but the building did not belong to the City Hall. It was also important to rethink the museum to have a more direct relationship with the river and the cellars: “The chosen building has a privileged view, since it is in the heart of Ribeira”, adds Rui Moreira’s assistant.
Paintings, documents, engravings and measuring instruments are part of the museum’s plundering. The pieces are, mostly, from the municipal collections. As explained by the Head of the Municipal Museum Division, Inês Ferreira: “We seek to host and show pieces from municipal collections that were in different places, for example in the historical archives, in Casa do Infante, in the Public Library, in the municipal warehouses and in Soares dos Reis National Museum. But, since these pieces are all municipal and were scattered around several places, we tried to gather here all that diversity that ,somehow, helps to tell the Port wine related stories.
The Head of the Municipal Museum Division adds that the museum’s pieces tell the story of the city’s government and its relationship with the Porto wine trade. Inês Ferreira says that “this new museum complements existing proposals”.
The museum has an appendix. Also in the Reboleira street, there is a space, parallel to the museum, where various activities will take place: workshops for families, temporary exhibitions, partnerships with Casa do Infante and with the parishes of São Nicolau.
The coordinator of the Port Wine Museum, Liliana Pereira, states that “it will be a space open to the city and the neighborhood”. She adds that on the 10th of March, a workshop for families is already scheduled. In the workshop, various activities will take place regarding the tradition of harvest and wine culture.