Clip, a really good new Vinho Verde

Super-impressed by this new Vinho Verde, made by Pedro Barbosa, viticulturist at Douro superstar property Vale Meao. Vinho Verde is often a bit spritzy, overcropped and over-acidic, but this is a good one, made from the Loureiro grape variety.

Clip  Loureiro 2012 DO Monte de Vaia, Vinho Verde, Portugal
11% alcohol. Bright, fresh citrus nose with a [...]

Noval Nacional 2011

So, in my initial round-up of 2011 Vintage Ports, I missed Quinta do Noval, and Noval’s Nacional, as well as Romaneira, which shares a connection (Christian Seely). My notes for all three are here. I’ve also included a video of me  tasting the wonderful 2011 Nacional.

Quinta do Noval Nacional 2011
Concentrated, sweet and dense with blackberry, black [...]

A rarity, a Portuguese Chenin Blanc

I enjoyed this: it’s the first time I’ve had a Portuguese Chenin Blanc.

Now Portugal is blessed with a wide array of its own varieties, so you might ask why any serious Portuguese wine grower would look elsewhere for foreign varieties to play with. But Chenin could be a worthy exception to this rule, because it [...]

A remarkable fortified dry wine from Portugal

This is an amazing wine. It’s from a now extinct Quinta in Carcavelos, Quinta da Bela Vista. The last crop from this vineyard was in 1969, and Carlos Fonseca (of Companhia Agricola do Sanguinhal, who bottled the wine in 1991, and holds the remaining stock) reckons that this particular wine, which is a non-vintage, has an [...]

Quinta do Vesuvio 2011, and Capela da Vesuvio 2011

Tonight I’m sampling the remains of two bottles of port from last night’s declaration tasting of the various Symington properties. It’s the pair of wines from Vesuvio, the regular vintage port and the special cuvee Capela.

I was visiting the Douro during the 2011 harvest with my colleagues Chris Losh, Richard Woodard, Emily O’Hare and Patricia [...]

The Symington 2011 Ports

So, the headline news on the 2011 vintage Ports from the Symingtons. [I’ll be writing these up in more detail, hopefully this evening.]

It’s a very good vintage indeed. Potentially a great one. The samples we tried yesterday were the final blend, but not final bottled samples, and some of them showed much more open fruit, [...]

A first glimpse of 2011 Vintage Ports

So tonight was spent getting acquantied with the hotly anticipated vintage Ports from 2011, which has just been pretty universally declared.

First up, Sandeman, owned by Sogrape, who were showing their wines at The Don, in the City of London.

Luis Sottomayor (above) of Sogrape describes 2011 as a typical, classic vintage. ‘It’s not an elegant, harmonious [...]

Some Portuguese wine people

Snapped today at the wonderful wines of Portugal tasting in London, some top Portuguese wine talent.

Filipa Pato, who makes great wines from Bairrada, white and red.

Pedro Araujo of Ameal, one of the top two estates in Vinho Verde. He’s master of Loureiro.

Luis Cerdeiro of Soalheiro in Vinho Verde. Makes the world’s greatest Alvarinho!

Rising star Rita [...]

Valle Pradinhos: a lovely, precise Portuguese white

This wine hits my sweet spot for a number of reasons. First, it’s really nice: a precise, subtly aromatic, fresh white wine with some personality. Second, it’s Portuguese, and I have a soft spot for Portugal. Third, it’s priced within my range, and I can afford to enjoy it without having blown a significant slice [...]

A few nice Portuguese bottles from The Wine Society

Ah, Portugal. One of my favourite wine countries. Here are three good bottles from The Wine Society that are affordable and tasty.

Campolargo Alvarelhão 2011 Bairrada, Portugal
This is brilliant. It’s from a variety that’s also grown in Galicia, where it is known as Brancellao (it was a component in this wine reviewed recently), and which makes medium/light [...]