Popular Portugal: Jorge Moreira, Poeira & other favourites

Yesterday I discovered that Poeira is the best selling Portuguese wine in Harvey Nichols’ restaurant.  At a tasting for the wine shop crew and sommeliers the elegant, finesseful and already dangerously digestible Poeira 2008 reinforced just why this wine is such a hit.   And it was great to report on my recent visit to Quinta do Poeira with winemaker Jorge Moreira and explain how this very special vineyard informs the wine.

While it may be the best seller in Harvey Nichols’ restaurant, it faced stiff competition from some really terrific examples of Portuguese wine  – Dao Sul Grande Encontro 2006 from Bairrada also vied for the top red spot and all agreed that this blend of Baga, Touriga Nacional and Merlot compared favourably with a top Barolo or Barbaresco with its lifted incense spice and fine but firm fruit, tannins and acidity.  As for everyday quaffing, Herdade Sao Miguel Ciconia 2009 was compared very favourably with Rioja for its smooth blend of ripe but not jammy red and black fruits.

For white wines Vinho Verde continued its winning streak. Reguengo de Melgaco Alvarinho 2009  made the case for Vinho Verde being Portugal’s sexiest white wine region and for Alvarinho being its sexiest white grape variety with ease.  With its honeysuckle perfume, peach and apricot fruit and persistent acidity, it captures all that’s good and great about Viognier while staying trim.

Last but by no means least the sighworthy Barbeito Malvasia 10 Year Old Reserve Madeira  entranced everyone with its deft combination of complexity and clarity thanks to Barbeito’s trademark racy, bright and pure citrus line.

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