Portugal Invades Seattle
I have fond memories of drinking Dao and Vino Verde with Ameijos con Carne in Cascais. They were simple wines, but delicious and cheap. Now they are bigger, cleaner and more complex. What a treat. I particularly liked the Quinta de Pedra Alvarinho 2011 full bodied fruit and perfect counterbalancing acidity. Among the Douros, I particularly liked the reds from Quinta Do Cume represented by the charming Claudia Cudell. Marrying art and science resulted in a very appealing fruity, easy Red Selection and a more serious and complex, but delicious Tinto. The dry Douros were an eye opener. All four Quinta Do S. Jose reds made by winemaker Joao Brito E Cunha were spectacular. The Principal Grande Reserva 2009 from the Bairrada DOC could be described as a SuperBairrada for its blend of Touriga Nacional with Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Alternatively, you could call it a Portuguese First Growth. Either way, it was GOOD!
The sweet wines were the real thing, none of the big six Neo- Post- Colonial Anglo deep red stuff, not some neo-post-colonial beverage to be served counterclockwise with cigars after the women adjourn to the parlor. Almost all of the sweet wines had both tawny character and color, even the whites. The sweet white Casa Do Conego Licoroso made from the Fernao Pires grape by Vidigal Wines was luscious like a very sweet Madeira. The Porto Messias Tawny and the Colheita 1985 were perfect examples of real Portuguese- style Porto. The highlight was a tasting of a dozen or so incredible red and white Portos from C. Da Silva. All of the Dalva wines were outstanding, but the 1971 white port was estupendo!
Portugal is where Spain was in the 1980s. Want to get in on the ground floor? Adopt these wonderful orphans looking for a home.