José Maria da Fonseca | Family of Wines. Wines of Family.


Founded in 1834, José Maria da Fonseca leads the way in the field of table wine and Setúbal Moscatel production and sales. Its brands can be found worldwide and exports currently account for about 80% of annual sales volume. 

A Key part part of the company’s strategy throughout its history has been environmental concern. This has been translated into the use of best practices in the treatment of vines and better management, preservation and conservation of natural resources. In turn, this has led to a new set of practices reflected in the community of which it is a part, thus enabling a supportive coexistence of the needs of all those involved.


The environmental concern also extends to the vineyards, where, since the early 90s, the company has been developing and applying viticulture in contact and focused on the preservation of natural resources. Integrated protection practices are followed in all vineyards and extended to grape suppliers. 

Viticulture constantly strives towards a balance between the use of technology and concern with the environment. José Maria da Fonseca pioneered drip irrigation, which it implemented in 1993, and which is now standard practice in national viticulture. Also, from the 1980s it started not mobilizing the soil, maintaining a vegetation cover that retains moisture, benefiting life and plant and animal biodiversity, which in turn implies a reduced need for water in the vineyards. The soils are fertilized with the stems of the grapes in the rows of vines, also incorporating organic matter from the pruning.

Agricultural research for new and better plants has been a practice over the past few decades and José Maria da Fonseca has collaborated with leading experts and with national and international research centers in the area of Enology and Viticulture.


This is where José Maria da Fonseca’s largest vineyard area is located. There are various sites, each offering different climatic conditions, exposure to sunlight and type of terrain, which facilitates a range of technical options that will maximize the qualitative potential of each wine.



Setúbal Moscatel is a dessert wine produced in Portugal on the Setúbal Peninsula,a region south of Lisbon which was recognised as a D.O.C. in 1907. Some years ago, Jose Maria da Fonseca decided to brand its Moscatel as Alambre.

Alambre was the name of the estate where José Maria da Fonseca first planted vines of the Moscatel grape variety, and also refers to the wine’s amber color.

The Setúbal Península has unique conditions to produce fortified wines from the Moscatel grape. The climate is influenced by the Tagus and Sado Rivers and the Serra da Arrábida hill range. It has Mediterranean characteristics with hot, dry days and humid nights at the end of summer. Winters are cold but not too rainy.


When you visit the house where José Maria da Fonseca was founded in 1834, you’ll get to know the essence of a Wine Family with almost 200 years of history, where the values passed down from generation to generation are kept alive while allowing the company to project itself into the 21st century.

You can also enjoy an unparalleled wine and gastronomic tasting experience and find out about the history, flavors and essence of the wine produced here for almost two centuries.

The José Maria da Fonseca Wine Tourism was distinguished in the 2013 W Awards (awarded by the wine critic Aníbal Coutinho) as Best Wine Tourism without Accommodation for 2012.