Superb Portuguese white
Portugal's red wines tend to get more attention than the whites. I'm guilty here: my recent 50 Great selection had just five whites in it, if I recall correctly, and all from the Minho. Here's a superb white from the master of Dão.
From Alvaro Castro, this is a serious white wine. It’s made from old vine Encruzado, Cercial and Bical. Castro is trying to replicate a great 1964 white he had, made by CEN (Centro de Estudos Vitivinícolas de Nelas) oenologist Cardoso de Vilhena. Castro has been strongly influenced by Vilhena, who he believes was a brilliant winemaker. This, the second release (2006 was first vintage) has a beautiful, intriguing nose: floral and herbal with lemon oil and waxy notes. Refined fruit character dominates the palate, which has lovely depth and intensity. There’s a rich herby complexity as well as some spice. It only has a hint of oak. Just a baby, this will develop beautifully and could age well for a long time. It’s a shame to drink it so young, really. 92/100 (£28 Castas, http://www.castas.co.uk/)