Light lemon colour with aromas of tangerine, gold delicious apple, white acacia and a hint of flint. On the palate, this nervy white is taut and fresh, with white grapefruit, Meyer lemon, mineral salinity and some smokiness. Serve this chilled with picnic lunches or a little warmer alongside veggie stir-fry.
Malvasia Fina produces subtle, fresh, complex wines. It is typically used as a blending grape for sparkling wines and still whites. This early ripener is characteristically alcohol rich, moderately acidic and plays host to a diverse range of flavours, in part based on where it is grown as well as the wine making techniques used to make it. Encruzado is regarded by many as one of the best white grapes Portugal has on offer. Grown almost exclusively in the Dão, it creates opulent, aromatic, complex wines. With an impressive balance of acidity and sugar, wines made from Encruzado have great aging potential.
Perhaps surprisingly, only 5% of the Dão is under vine. Often planted in forest clearings and surrounded by mountains on three sides, the high elevations and relatively low temperatures here create a slower ripening process, resulting in wines of great acidic character. The region takes its name from the river, along which most of the vineyards are planted. Encruzado is the most widely-planted white variety here.
The vines are over 50 years old and planted on middle slope vineyards at an altitude of 400 meters above sea level.
Grapes were harvested by in the first half of September. After crushing, the must decanted for 48 hours. Natural fermentation, without the addition of yeasts, took place in stainless steel tanks for approximately 3 months, with the wine sitting on its lees to garner complexity and mouth-feel.
Antonio Lopes Ribiero and Sara Dionisio left their steady jobs in the art world in Lisbon and moved back to Mouraz, Antonio’s birthplace where his family has had vineyards for many generations. The land had been farmed organically before, and that’s how Sara and Antonio wished to continue. Making wine in their tiny winery, adjacent to the local village church and just a stone’s throw away from the house Antonio was born in, they have deep generational ties to their village, Mouraz, and its terroir. In the cellar, there is a marriage of old and traditional, with modern approaches. Gentle pressings, natural yeast starters, long lees contact in the wine and minimal handling are the time-honored practices. Stainless steel tanks with temperature control and pneumatic presses represent the modern improvements. The results are clear: fresh and pleasurable wines with pure expressions of the older grape vines from which they were sourced and distinct transparency to the terroir they have grown up on.