Covela reborn – Vinho Verde, Portugal


Covela reborn – Vinho Verde, Portugal


Covela is back. I was a fan of this estate, which was previously owned by Nuno Araújo (related to Pedro Araújo of Ameal), and which made really interesting wines from a blend of Portuguese and international varieties, from biodynamically farmed vineyards on the border of the Minho and Douro regions.

But things went wrong financially in 2008, the property went into receivership, and for a while, production stopped. Then Covela was bought by a Briton (Tony Smith) and a Brazilian (Marcelo Lima) in 2011. Their business venture is known as Lima Smith, with this property plus Boavista and Tecedeiras also in the portfolio, as well as a stake recently acquired in Maison Champy, Burgundy. Lima Smith re-hired winemaker Rui Cunha, and these wines represent the second release (for the whites) of the new reborn Covela.

Covela Edicao Nacional Arinto 2013 Vinho Verde, Portugal
Lively, fresh, linear and pure with nice citrussy fruit. Quite mineral with lovely citrus fruit and good precision. Some pear, apple and citrus characters. A lovely dry white wine. 89/100

Covela Edicao Nacional Avesso 2013 Vinho Verde, Portugal
Very clean, fresh and linear with a mineral, subtly citrussy nose. The palate is lively and bright with subtle green herb and grapefruit notes as well as some lemons and minerals. Pure, focused and assertive. 89/100

Covela Escolha Branco 2013 Minho, Portugal
Avesso and Chardonnay. Lively, fresh, floral citrus nose with some subtle pear fruit. Crisp, fruity palate with pure pear and melon fruit, as well as bright lemon notes and some slightly spicy, mineral characters. A refined fruit-driven wine. 91/100

Ovela Escolha Tinto 2012 Minho, Portugal
Touriga Nacional, Cabernet Franc and Merlot, from granitic soila. Vibrant colour. Lovely black cherry and blackberry fruit with a hint of olive and herbs. Ripe yet fresh dark fruits, with a bit of grip. This is very stylish, showing sweet raspberries and blackberries, with good focus. 90/100

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