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This beautiful and lushly forested Atlantic island was discovered in 1419. Named for the Portuguese word for "wood", Madeira produces some of the world's most unusual fortified wines. It was discovered that the long hot journey to the Indian Ocean improved the wine remarkably and the return trip made it even better. A new style of wine was born, "Rainwater Madeira" was so named in the 18th century because it is as soft as rainwater and the colour of straw, glistering after a shower of rain.
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