Tasting No. 174 – February 29, 2016 – Wines from Portugal

Club del Vino


Capri Ristorante, McLean VA


1. Presenters and Participants

Wines presenters: Jairo Sanchez, Alfonso Sanchez

Participants: Members: Marcello Averburg,  Ruth Connolly, Clarita Estrada, Peter Lapera, Alvaro López, Orlando Mason, Ítalo Mirkow, Jorge Requena , Alfonso Sánchez, Jairo Sánchez, Ricardo Zavaleta, German Zincke.

Non members:  None

Type of Tasting: Blind

2. The Wines 

  1. 2014 Grao Vasco, Dao White
  2. 2012 Quinta Do Vale Meao Meandro, Douro
  3. 2012 Quinta Dos Carvalhais Dao Touriga National
  4. 2012 Quinta Dos Carvalhas Reserva Douro
  5. 10 -Year Blandy’s Malmsey, Madeira
  6. 10-Year Taylor Fladgate , Port

3. The Menu

  1. Seafood salad
  2. Grilled portobello mushroom
  3. Grilled salmon with vegetables
  4. Pork loin in red wine sauce with roasted potatoes
  5. Dessert and coffee

4. Information on the Wines

(The information below has been compiled from varios internet sources) .

2014 Grao Vasco, Dao White

IMG_0266The Wine: Tasting Notes Lemony yellow color with glints of green. An intense, youthful aroma: pear and pineapple, along with a hint of flowers and some minerality. Its bright acidity gives it attractive freshness, and it tastes fruity and mineral, harmonious on the finish, elegant and well balanced.

Grão Vasco Dão White 2014 is a light, lively wine that offers both the classic elegance typical of the white wines of the Dão region and great versatility for everyday drinking. Grão Vasco is a respected brand with true Portuguese character.  The wine is a blend of Bical, Cercial, Encruzado, Malvasia Fina.

Read more at: http://eng.sograpevinhos.com/marcas/Grão%20Vasco

2012 Quinta Do Vale Meao Meandro, Douro


The Wine:  Very concentrated in colour. Deep and complex nose with lots of aromatic nuances, yet maintaining the balance between them. In the mouth it is vibrant, in a set of great elegance, showing an excellent integration of the wood, a surprisingly large variety of flavours, and a very long aftertaste.

This wine is a blend of 58% Touriga Nacional, 35% Touriga Franca, 5% Tinta Barroca and 2% Tinta Roriz.   After being crushed, the grapes were cooled down and trodden by foot during four hours in granite lagares and then transferred to small refrigerated stainless steel vinifying vats. Each grape variety is vinified separately. All the wine was matured in French Allier oak barriques (225 litres). 80% new and 20% second usage.

Read more at: http://www.quintadovalemeao.pt/historia.php

2012 Quinta Dos Carvalhais, Dao, Touriga National

IMG_0268The Wine: Tasting Notes: It is intensely red in color. It has a generous bouquet which includes red fruits and floral notes, especially violet, so typical of this variety, freshened by warm spicy hints and underpinned by harmonious, integrated oak notes. Its palate has a surprisingly fresh attack and shows a fine acidity, with well-rounded but lively tannins, that culminates in a well-balanced and elegant finish.

Harvested by plot into 20 kg crates and selected on arrival at the winery, the Touriga Nacional grapes were directly off-loaded into the de-stemmer-crusher. The grape juice gravity fed into small stainless steel tanks, equipped with automatic pumping-over, where alcoholic fermentation took place for about a week, at an average temperature of about 28ºC. They remained in post-fermentation maceration for another 20 days. Malolactic fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks, followed by a 12-month maturation in new, French oak, fine-grain barrels from 8 French cooperages. Throughout the maturing process numerous tastings were performed in order to monitor the wine’s evolution after which the blend was prepared, fined, filtered and bottled.

2012 Quinta Dos Carvalhas Reserva, Douro


The Wine: This is an initially smooth wood-aged wine that is intense, concentrated and packed with power and tannins. It is rich and full of brooding dark plum and dense with structure. Dominated by Touriga Nacional, it has that variety’s perfumed character which is balanced by the smoother Touriga Franca and Tinta Roriz. It is obviously a wine to age, so drink from 2018.

10 -Year Blandy’s Malmsey, Madeira


The Wine: The Madeira regulations say that 10-years old is the age of the youngest part of the blend. So this richly sweet Malmsey contains many older wines. These are shown in the old gold color, the proper citrus acidity and the dryness that goes with wood aging. At the end, though, the liquid honey flavors are dominant.

Madeira is a fortified wine found only on the mountainous Atlantic island of the same name.The vines are grown from sea level up to a height of 600 metres and the wines range from dry to very rich. The principal grape varieties are Malmsey, Bual, Verdelho, Sercial and Tinta Negra Mole. The driest wines are made from the Sercial grape grown on high cool slopes mainly on the north of the Island. The sweetest Madeiras are made from the rich Malmsey grape which flourishes on the warmer lower-lying vineyards, particularly around São João on the north and Jardim do Mar on the south.

During the 18th century many of the ships which took on casks of Madeira passed through the heat of the tropics. It was noticed that the effects of the increased temperature on the casks of the fortified wine was entirely beneficial. Indeed the wines acquired remarkable keeping qualities, extraordinary longevity and an attractive mellowed character.

Before long, ships were taking consignments of Madeira on round trips especially to subject the wines to this tropical heat. This heating of the wine, known as’estufagem’, became a recognised process in Madeira’s preparation and when it became too expensive to use ships an alternative method was found.This involved ageing the wines in large lofts naturally heated by the plentiful Madeiran sunlight. Today all the MWC’s premium wines continue to be aged using this, the traditional ‘canteiro’ system, where the wines are warmed over a period of years in seasoned American oak casks by the natural heat of the sun in the lodges of Funchal.

Read more at: http://www.blandys.com/section.php?id=981

10-Year Taylor Fladgate, Port 


The Wine: Taylor’s 10 Year Old Tawny Port is a deep brick colour with amber rim. Rich and elegant nose combining aromas of ripe berry fruit with a delicate nuttiness and subtle mellow notes of chocolate, butterscotch and fine oak wood. Smooth and silky on the palate and full of ripe figgy, jammy flavours which persist on the long finish.

Although best known for its legendary Vintage Ports, Taylor’s is also one of the most respected producers of 10 Year Old Tawny Port.  This style of Port is fully matured in seasoned oak casks each holding about 630 litres of wine. Here, over many years of ageing, the wine gradually takes on its characteristic amber ‘tawny’ color, slowly developing the complex mellow flavors and the smooth luscious palate which are the hallmarks of Tawny Port. Taylor’s blends its magnificent 10 year old tawny from its extensive reserves of old cask aged Ports matured in the firm’s cool and tranquil cellars (known as ‘lodges’) in Oporto on Portugal’s Atlantic coast.  It is the best selling 10 Year Old Aged Tawny Port in the UK.

Read more at: http://www.taylor.pt/en/what-is-port-wine/introduction/

4. Club del Vino Members Rating : 

Overview: The wines were judged from good (Grao Vasco) to excellent (Quinta Dos Carvalhas Reserva Red BlendDouro). The order of preference given by the participants at the blind testing before disclosing the wines coincided with the average scores. 

Best Rated Wine: Quinta Dos Carvalhas Reserva Red Blend Douro – 90 Pts

Best Value for Money: Quinta Dos Carvalhas Reserva Red Blend Douro – Price $15

See detailed evaluation and prices of all wines here:  Summary Evaluation 174 – Portugal

5. Regional Notes

Read about Portugal wine regions here : https://clubvino1.com/2014/02/13/tasting-152-february-242014-touriga-nacional-from-portugal/



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