Very interesting dinner last night with one of Portugal’s finest, Dirk Niepoort (above). The focus was on special projects that he’s been involved with, and – rather appropriately – the venue was The Loft Project in east London (read more about this here).
There’s too much to write about in a blog post – the combination of food and wine was full of interest. But just a few highlights are worth mentioning here.
On the white front, The Niepoort Navazos 2008 is beginning to open out and gain elegance and complexity. Quinta das Bageiras 1994 was really interesting – a white wine that is ageing brilliantly.
Dirk’s Douro Pinot Noir 2006 tasted more of Burgundy than Pinot Noir. It was a good match with the dish of the day (for me) – Portuguese codfish with green asparagus – an interesting take on fish and chips (see the picture above).
We tried two vintages of Omlet, a Douro wine made in conjunction with Telmo Rodriguez, which were interesting, but slightly overshadowed by a Spanish wine, the Raul Perez Ultreia 2008, which had some lovely meaty wildness.
Perhaps the surprise of the evening (in a nice way) was a brilliant wine from Ribeira Sacra in Spain’s Galicia – Ladredo 2008, which Dirk made in collaboration with Raul Perez. This was elegant, fine, expressive and showed lovely dark cherry fruit. Just superb.
Also wonderful was the 2008 Spitzerberg, the wine Dirk makes in Austria’s Carnuntum region. It has the elegance of great Burgundy. Pictured below is Sarah Ahmed tussling with some Quiejo de Serra, which was just about perfect.