Vasco Croft

General manager / owner

Born in Lisbon with an inclination for metaphysics, Vasco thought of being an astrologer in his teens, then decided to become an architect. In his twenties he discovered Steiner’s philosophy, and went on to study pedagogy and sculpture in England, where he also discovered an interest in woodworking and furniture design. 

On his come back to Portugal, he took on a leading role for the Waldorf movement for many years alongside with his own furniture design company. In his thirties he had a life changing encounter with a Buddhist monk, where a bottle of wine was shared. 

This event, taken by Vasco as  a personal meeting with Dionysus, led him in 2003 to start a wine project in Casal do Paço,  a  semi-abandoned property belonging to his family since the 17th century, leading to the creation of Aphros, a winery project where his life long interests in art,  spirituality and nature meet in a context  of community building.

When not actively engaged in work he likes get lost by sitting in silence,  walking his dog Gaia by the river, or lousily playing tunes in his guitar.

Miguel Viseu

Winemaker / Sales manager

Son of a wine producer in Douro, Miguel grew up between vines, cellars, imbibing the fascination of working routines around wine in his early years. Trained as an agronomist and specialized in winemaking, he gave free rein to his adventurous spirit, travelling  the wide world for ten years in a quest to gather experience and inspiration for perfecting his art. Having worked with people such as Paul Hobbs and Sean O’Callaghan, and in places ranging from Napa Valley to Burgundy, Brasil and Tuscanny, Miguel became an all rounded experienced winemaker. 

Having developed an inclination towards ecological viticulture, biodynamics and natural wines, Miguel wholeheartedly accepted Aphros invitation to return to his home country in 2017, to embrace this utopia as his own for a long term project.

Alongside all the demanding work at Aphros, this creative, restless spirit, still finds the energy to manage his own smaller projects of beautiful ciders and wines.

Tiago Sampaio

Consultant winemaker

Grandson of a producer in Douro and holding a Phd in viticulture and oenology by the Oregon University, Tiago Sampaio is one of the most brilliant winemakers and producers of the new generation in Portugal. Having returned to Portugal 12 years ago to start his own project with old vines belonging to his family, Tiago has since then focused in making organic viticulture and natural wines. 

Having won the Aphros’ team admiration through his extensive knowledge, craftsmanship and tasting capacities, Tiago was asked to join it as a consultant and creative partner since 2017, enriching Aphros with precious insights and skills in the art of winemaking.

Dominique Massenot

Biodynamic viticulture consultant

With a solid work of research and consultancy over several decades, covering the whole of France and many other countries, Dominique is a main reference for biodynamic viticulture worldwide. He is also the main responsible for education programmes within Biodyvin association. Standing out as much forhis expertise and vision as for the clarity and simplicity employed in the sharing his knowledge, Dominique’s counselling ranges from the most basic material aspects in a farm (soils, drainage, tools), to the most subtle ones, concerning the precise use of plants, planetary calendar and BD preparations.

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João Cacho

Viticulture manager

Born into a family of farmers from Sistelo, an iconic rural village, and having grown up in the midst of vines, animals and trees, João Cacho is truly a son of the land and a rare example of continuity of Minho’s traditional peasantry.

Working since very early in his family estates, he completed his education as an agriculture engineer and acquired professional experience as a senior manager for major enterprises both in Portugal and Galicia.

With incomparable sensitivity towards people, animals and plants, Cacho envelops the team and the vines with the gentleness of his heart and the imperturbable peace of of a Zen Master.

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João Garrido

A lifelong dedication to the viticulture in the Vinho Verde Region, and many decades of experience as the director of Amândio Galhano experimental station, made João Garrido a beacon of knowledge concerning indigenous varieties and the secrets of their cultivation.

With great enthusiasm he embraced the mission of being part of Aphros project, to take the potential of these grapes and their terroir to new levels focusing on precise management of soils and vines aided by biodynamic practices.