Day 6

Dona Louise

Now we’re talking! Lemos are my favourite vineyard of all the ones the guys import from. From the Dao region, this is the area I call the Burgundy of Portugal (in that their wines are as good, but the same quality is a tenner or more less than you pay for the Burgundy premium).

From what I understand Lemos grow 4 main red grape varieties; Touriga Nacional, Tinta Roriz, Alfrocheiro and Jaen.

I hope there’s more Lemos in my calendar. This is one of possibly my least favourites of the wines they produce and it’s still bloody excellent!

All their grapes are hand-picked (I think this is because their vineyard is in a valley between 4 mountain ranges, so the hills where the grapes grow are too steep to machine pick) so even their blends are made from high quality grapes (I so hope there are some of the single varietals to come, so I can bore you raving about how good they are).

But back to the Louise – this is a so-called entry level wine! This is made by blending the Touriga Nacional, Tinta Roriz and Jaen. It’s deep, full, and rich, with a deep dark fruit flavour (a hint of black cherry) and a long finish. Aging in French oak has rounded this wine out beautifully. A warning though, this should be decanted (as should most reds really. I’ve never had one worse for the decanting) as it has a fair bit of sediment. Sediment isn’t a bad sign; here it’s mostly a by-product of the age of this wine. But drinking the bits gives you a hangover. If you don’t have a decanter, pour it into a jug and be careful at the last pour. That works just as well.

Drink it with?

This will work with beef or game as the tannins will stand up well to it. The fruit flavours and fortitude of this wine would match pretty well with duck, even if you have Asian spices with it. But this is really a brilliant wine to have a glass of if you want a powerful, fruity, and complex red for enjoyment on its own.

Value

Find me a red wine with the power, balance, quality, and complexity of this wine readily available in a supermarket for under £10, bring it to me at one of our markets (details on the website) and if I agree what you bring is better I’ll pay for a free bottle of the Louise for you! This is a whole lot of wine for the money. Buy and enjoy! Don’t take my word for it. Check the reviews on the website from people who have sensibly purchased it already.

Day 7

wine adventure day 6-8

Vale da Calada Rosé

I’m going to level with you, I seldom drink Rosé. Probably because in previous years all I knew of was the mediocre Mateus Rose or some pretty bad Californian Zinfandels. But in the interests of bringing you, the potential customer, the best service I have done so!

This is actually pretty good! This is made from the Aragonez grape (which is similar to the Tempranillo that you’re likely more familiar with) from the Alentejo region. Fresh and crisp and none of the cloying sweetness that you get with some of the aforementioned wines (I hope I’m not risking a lawsuit here). Some subtle strawberry and cherry notes and very palatable. Easy drinking and only 12% alcohol.

Drink it with?

This is a nice aperitif. Perhaps more of a summer drink, it would make a nice match with a grilled white fish like seabass (I can feel it now. Sun on your face, the seabass fillet, and a nice chilled glass of Calada Rosé – made me forget how cold it is outside right now).

Value?

It’s £7.50, so if you like a Rose with a little sophistication this is a keenly priced wine. If you’re not a regular Rose drinker but are curious, you’ll do a lot worse than to try this. Well worth a whirl at the price.

Disclaimer – the views about other Rose wines are the author’s own and not those of the site. A purely personal view and certainly not actionable in court, but if they are please direct legal action to Pat and not Simon and Anthony

Day 8

wine adventure day 6-8

Ventoz Arinto

This is a single varietal Arinto from the Vino Verde region. Very light and refreshing on the palate; prickly and acidic but pleasantly so. A hint of grapefruit and citrus gives it a nice fruit balance. A slight natural spritz makes it dance on the tongue. Easy drinking at 12%. A very decent drop. If you like the style of the region then this is a superior quality Vino Verdhe that’s a bit more complex than the entry level, lower alcohol wines from this part of Portugal

Drink it with?

This wine is great with sushi and the acidity really handles strong flavours like wasabi. This is also terrific on its own as a convivial drop with friends.

Value?

9 quid. Very decent and an enhanced and more complex wine than a general Vino Verde style. If you like the citric acidity of the wines from that region this is well worth paying an extra quid or two for the added complexity and style.

Buy Dona Louise
Buy Vale da Calada Rosé
Buy Ventoz Arinto

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *