Turning Portuguese

My August Wines of the Month are the real McCoy from Filipa Pato, one of 3 bargainful Bairrada beauts I tasted last week at The Wine Society (see here for my report).  My red, on the other hand, hails from the Cape but it’s an exciting blend of Syrah with Touriga Nacional and Trincadeira made by David Trafford.  Not from old plantings either, so I’m excited that the Portuguese influence is taking hold elsewhere and not just for fortifieds, which is why you’ll typically find Portuguese red varieties in Australia and South Africa!

Vinhos Doidos Bossa  2009 (Bairrada) –  lemon rind and grapefruit to the nose and palate.  Nice weight and freshness betrays the skilful hand of Filipa Pato, one of my favourite Portuguese producers.  This is a very attractive, characterful white made from Bical and Maria Gomes.  At only £6.75 at The Wine Society, it blows the supermarket fodder out of the water!   You can read my note on the latest release of Nossa Branco 2009, her very singular, single vineyard Bical here.

Malagas Wine Company Sijnn 2007 (Swellendam)- an impressive blend of 42% Shiraz, 26% Mourvedre, 21% Touriga Nacional, 10% Trincadeira and 1% Cabernet Sauvignon.  The vines are planted on mean, super-stony soils –  a touch Douro-like perhaps, so perfect for the Touriga Nacional and Trincadeira, commonly known as Tinta Amarela in the Douro (you can read more about the vineyard here).   It certainly brings out the Touriga Nacional, a little of which goes a long way.  Here its perfume of violets and succulent, fleshy black cherry make for an elegant wine matched by equally elegant, fine tannins.  Terrific RRP: £ 17.75; imported by Bibendum.

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