Thursday, March 6, 2008

Portugal Wine Tasting: Estremadura Region

This week I attended a Portugal Wine tasting hosted by the Midtown Winers, a wine tasting group I belong to in Sacramento, California. Yesterday, I talked about the white wines we sampled. I'll begin the red wines by talking about the only wine we sampled from the Estremadura region. (Map used by permission of Wikipedia.)

It was hard to find much about this region. It isn't even mentioned in Karen McNeil's "Wine Bible." The Spanish and Portuguese wine blog CataVino describes this region as being northwest of Lisbon occupying an area of approximately 24 miles. It's made up of limestone soils or sand. Many grapes are grown here, but the Tinta Miuda is the one we sampled at the tasting. It was even harder to find information on this grape!

The 100% Tinta Miuda was made by Aveleda: Quinta da Aveleda Estremadura 2001. I don't think Aveleda makes this wine any more because I couldn't find it on their web site. The wine had flavors of plum and was earthy. There was light fruit along with a light black pepper taste, similar to what you might taste in a Zinfandel. The finish was not very lasting as the wine had light tannins. This wine was not very memorable, but it was a pleasant wine. It's too bad we only had one wine from the Estremadura region. Monday I'll cover the Duoro region which was very well represented at out tasting. Click here to read an interesting account of CataVino's recent trip in Estremadura.


Alex said...

I found a page covering Estremadura and the Setubal Peninsula in The World Atlas of Wine (Hugh Johnson & Jancis Robinson). Apparently Estremadura is Portugal's most productive wine region - so it's surprising there's not more written on it!

Which reminds me I need to try more Portuguese wines ...

Orion Slayer said...

Alex, thanks for that information! I'll have to look it up. Of course, there may be tons of material out there, I could just be lame at find information about Portugal.

Anonymous said...

Hello I'm João Passarinho a winemaker in Estremadura region. First sorry about my english, because I'm must improve it.
Well, Estremadura is the most old region in Portugal. When other regions look for wine, they buy it in Estremadura, because of the soil, because is a very fertilizer region.
Now the region updates to a new wourld of opportunities, and planted new grapes, like Touriga Nacional, that improves much more quality in wines, and improves the winerys.
I hope in a near future you return to Portugal and to Estremadura region. If you see at Catavino, Gabriella taste wines at "Essência do Vinho" in Porto, and the first place for red wines go to Chocapalha - Estremadura region.

I work in one recent producer - Quinta da Casaboa. I'm 31 years old and I hope to be a new part of winemakers in this country.


Orion Slayer said...

Thank you very much for posting that information. I would love to visit the Estremadura region. With friendly people like you living there, it must be a great place to visit. Do you have a web-site or email address I could contact you with?

wine said...

Wow!it`s a very nice article about wine testing.I agree portugal wine testing is good wine testing.Which have explain region of as Wine Bible.

Louis Horta said...

I am a vineyard consultant in California doing a wine project in Estremadura Portugal. Like my friend Jerry Luper of Luperlagacy who believed in the Douro, I believe the Estremadura has the potential for some of the finest wines from Europe. Our first 2007 micro production of Cabernet Franc currently in the barrel is showing signs that our believe was not in vain.

send me an E-mail address where I can send you info on our project at Quinta da Cadavosa.

Cordial Regards,

Louis C. Horta

Horta Vineyards International

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