The Eurovison Song Contest is a joke in the UK; a celebration of Euro-camp sneered at with amused fascination by British TV commentators and viewers alike. But Portugal has taken it very seriously in the past and in 1974 the song contest entry, E Depois do Adeus sung by Paulo de Carvalho was used as a signal to start the 25th April Revolution (by the way Sweden won that year with Waterloo by Abba). This year the Portuguese entry is intentionally revolutionary, much to the chagrin of the establishment. Despite not garnering a single vote from the official jury, a band calledHomens da Luta (‘Men of Struggle’) won the public vote with a deliberately provocative song called A Luta é Alegria (‘The Struggle is Joy’). There is a serious side to this. Portugal’s economy is in a dire state after a decade in the eurozone. It should have been clear from the start that the ‘one size fits all’ currency would not work and that the likes of Germany and Portugal are far from being on a level playing field. With an overvalued currency and artificially low interest rates, Portugal has not been able to compete and has lost much of its more productive economy over the last ten years. It is about to end in tears, not just for the much despised government of José Socrates but for many Portuguese people. This includes the wine industry. I feel that we would all have been better off outside the euro with a competitive currency that would help Portuguese exports and interest rates to suit domestic economic circumstances. But for now we are stuck within the eurozone whilst politicians and eurocrats paper over the cracks. This impasse can’t last! Watch Portugal's Eurovision entry and make up your own mind.
19 - 20 An outstanding wine (*****)
17 – 18 An excellent wine in its class, highly recommended (****)
15 - 16 A good wine, with much to recommend it (***)
13 - 14 An enjoyable but simple, straightforward wine (**)
10 – 12 A very ordinary wine without faults but with no great merit (*)
8 - 10 Disagreeable (no stars)
Below 8 Faulty