Home News > September 2018 > Success stories: DFJ Vinhos

Following several medal wins in the 2018 SWA competition, we take a few sips with DFJ Vinhos, based in Portugal, to find out what’s on the horizon, including the upcoming harvest.

1. Can you tell us about your winning wines from this year’s SWA competition?

3 years ago we created the ESCADA Reserva Touriga Nacional red, which this year won a SWA Food Match and Gold Medal. We actually created this wine for consumers in Norway because they love full deep red wines, very intense and tasty with a harmonious combination of fruit and oak, and elegant at the same time. Since then we’ve seen more demand for the wine around with other clients expressing interest in this style of wine. We were delighted with the SWA award mainly the Food Match because it shows we are in the right direction for a demanding market such as the UK.

The PORTADA Reserva red (SWA Gold) was created in November 2017 for Polish consumers who are looking for a very tasty and rich red wine, easy drinking and elegant, with a very good price for the quality. It’s been a real success over there and is one of our most well-known wines as it has been awarded a total of 1 Trophy, 7 Gold medals, 3 Silver, 2 Bronze and 2 Best Buys.

The BIGODE Quirky (SWA Bronze) was created in 2017 for the Australian market, to celebrate ‘Movember’. We opted for a strong label here and marketed it as a ‘man’s best friend’ and the wine is very, very easy drinking and fruity to appeal to a number of people and perfect for events and catering with a great ratio of price/ quality.

The ESCADA Touriga Nacional red (SWA commended) was created in 2015 for the Norwegian market. Here the objective it was to offer a kind of “fruit bomb”, velvety, tasty and really easy drinking with a classic presentation. It’s one of our most successful wines.

2. What has happened following the medals for these wines?

Following the announcement, these four wines had immediate attention from our clients in the UK. We communicated only to our net of clients, consumers and contacts to give them first refusal and this is how we like to work with our partners, working with them on distribution and communication too.

3. Why did you enter this year’s competition?

We invest heavily in wine competitions around the world, but only where our partners inform us it’s important for our brands and distribution. SWA is the best for this in the UK as their goal is to market to the on-trade. We found the competition was perfect for our objectives, with an impressive and respected team of judges including sommeliers and wine buyers.

4. Can you tell us a little bit about this year’s harvest?

In Portugal the first week of August brings an extreme heatwave which is considered responsible for 20 to 25% reduction of the future harvest. Near the Atlantic when historically it was difficult to get to 30ºC with nocturne humidity in early August, we saw 38ºC on the 2nd August and 40ºC on the 3rd with 26ºC during the night. The quality will only be perceived after the harvest.

5. What’s next for the wine / vineyard?

Two years ago DFJ VINHOS agreed a long term contract with a Lisboa single estate producer with 30 hectares and a wine centre. We will be directly responsible for the production and wines produced here. We are also negotiating another contract with the same objective with a much bigger single estate producer.

In addition, DFJ VINHOS bought 50 hectares near our headquarters with vines being planted now. Here we have much more control of the production which it’s the key to have great fruits to produce the best wines. Also, in December last year we launched our first sparkling wine, the medium dry PORTADA and are excited to see how this progresses. Since this May we have also introduced the PORTADA Vinho Verde so it is very exciting times indeed.
Find out more about these winning wines and where to find them here.