The 2018 viticultural year was out of the ordinary, in comparison with the last five years. Winter was cold and dry and spring was cool and with very high rainfall. The summer was marked by two different stages, first cold and rainy and towards the end, warm and extremely dry. This provoked a later flowering season, however with the occurrence of rain, the vine found great levels of water to flourish. There was a higher pressure than average for mildium and the climatic instability brought productivity levels down. At Quinta Vale D. Maria (Cima Corgo) we monitored the vineyard carefully to make sure mildium was not very strong. At Quinta Vale do Sabor (Douro Superior), a more consistent climate offered very good conditions for vine development. In August, some dehydration and sun burn occurred, though quite mildly. Therefore, production levels did not fall dramatically at either of our estates. Harvest began on the 12th of September with white grapes. It ran smoothly, with grape picking occurring with the ideal maturation, and resulting in musts of great quality.
Grape origins: A blend of Touriga Franca and Touriga Nacional grape varieties from 5 years old to 35 years old vineyards, situated in Loureiro (Baixo Corgo) and in our own vineyards located in the Rio Sabor Valley (Douro Superior).
Vinification and ageing: At Quinta Vale D. Maria, in stainless steel for 7 to 12 days at temperatures between 22ºC and 27ºC. Ageing in a mix of two, three and four years old French oak barrels for 12 months. Another 13 months in stainless steel.
Tasting notes: With a dark garnet color and red rim, this is our fruity red blend. Cherries, plums, spices and some balsamic notes from the oak ageing pop up from the glass. In the mouth, the wine announces itself as a round, well-structured red wine, giving way to a crisp, fresh red. The wine lingers on the palate, long enough to call for another sip.