jamie goode's wine blog

Friday, March 13, 2009

More from Portugal

Just back from Portugal, and a very enjoyable, successful trip. I do worry about the weather, though: while temperatures in the 20s are very enjoyable, it is only March.

I came back very impressed by the various projects of Joao Portugal Ramos (above). Since I last visited in 2005, the wines have all improved (they were already pretty good) - the 2008 Alentejo wines are spot on, including a great 3 Euro wine, the Loios, showing amazing vibrancy of fruit. The new Duorum project is exciting, and not least because the Colheita 2007 is retailing at a price where it offers incredible value for money (c. 10 in the UK). Below is the view from one of Joao's vineyards towards Estremoz.

I was in the Ribatejo today, at the Falua winery with winemakers Antonina Barbosa and Mario Andrade. We took a look at some vineyards - pictured below are budbreak in a Trincadeira block, and wild flowers in an old vine Castelao (Periquita) vineyard.
The Falua winery is home to the Tagus Creek brand, as well as Conde de Vimioso. The Ribatejo isn't a very well known region outside Portugal, but the wines offer excellent value for money.

We lunched on cow's feet and chick peas at a small restaurant close to the winery. The cow's feet were gelatinous (mostly collagen), but the overall effect was a good one!

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