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Home Winners > Winners 2015 > White, including Vinho Verde

Winner Details

Portugal: White, including Vinho Verde


2015: Gold 4 Silver 2 Bronze 5 Commended 7
2014: Gold 3 Silver 6 Bronze 7 Commended 6

If you’ve not woken up to Portugal’s potential yet, you should. It’s been a growing section of the Sommelier Wine Awards for a few years now, and the quality and variety on offer is impressive. This year, our tasters found a beautifully balanced selection of whites for the Gold List – two Vinho Verdes, one the spritzy type, and the other, a more serious interpretation, plus two richer whites, covering all the key price-points – plus a slew of good sub-£10 wines in behind. Great food wines – quirky and different – but not unapproachable to the customers. Big tick.

Star Performer
Congratulations to Quinta do Crasto for picking up a red and a white Gold, but also a Critics’ Choice for the white
 


From the Tasting Teams


‘The Vinho Verdes would be a good substitute maybe for a white Languedoc, a Verdicchio, or a Gavi. They have that lovely spritz and minerality.’ Andrea Domenicucci, Whatley Manor

‘With Vinho Verde I think of fresh shellfish, food from the sea, this freshness matched with the freshness in the wine.’ Simone Fadda, Roka

‘After a buying trip to Vinho Verde a couple of years ago, I got a Vinho Verde into a Thai restaurant chain and they sell about 12,000 bottles a year now.’ Annette Scarfe MW, team leader

‘We went from modern to very traditional style, and the best was a very traditionally made wine – old-school, slightly oxidative and quite rich. These wines definitely need food though – something savoury and salty.’ Robert Tozser, The Rib Room

‘These wines can be fantastic value for money and often show much more complexity than might be expected at these price-points.’ Mya Brown, Vinoteca Marylebone


Award winners

Found 17 wines

Portugal

Quinta do Crasto, Superior, Branco 2013, Douro, Portugal

Gold medal winner Critics Choice

A contrasting style for the final white Portuguese Gold. Indeed, Quinta do Crasto's poise and depth gave it not only Gold, but a coveted Critics' Choice, too. ‘Notes of barley sugar and great minerality on the nose, with tarragon and herbs on a stony palate. In a Burgundy glass, great with Rockefeller oysters,’ suggested Mark Graham of Butlers Wharf Chop House, with Paolo Pivato of Luton Hoo Hotel Golf & Spa adding: ‘Smoky hints, good complexity and a long aftertaste, the minerality is strong but very well balanced with its freshness.’ Try also with veal chop marinated in Greek yoghurt and sage.

£15.95 Enotria&Coe

Sogrape, Morgadio da Torre, Alvarinho 2013, Vinho Verde, Portugal

Gold medal winner

Great weight, mineral hints and fine elegance from Morgadio illustrated the more serious side of Vinho Verde well. ‘Floral and grapefruit aromas opening out to a myriad of zesty citrus dimensions and crisp Cox’s apple bite. Juicy, elegant and long,’ said Robert Mason of Cheese at Leadenhall. ‘Lemon tree woody nose with some tropical notes,’ noted Vittorio Gentile of Theo Randall at The InterContinental Hotel. With its rounded texture and luscious fruit, it's a good match for shellfish or squid.

£9.55 Sogrape UK

Adega de Monção, Inés 2014, Vinho Verde, Portugal

Gold medal winner

Classic style and great value gave Inés Gold. ‘A hint of spritz, good apricot mingling with lively lime-based acidity and a lengthy finish,’ began Chris Wood of Chelsea Vintners, with team leader Annette Scarfe MW adding: ‘Lovely vibrancy and freshness, greengage and quince skin notes, well balanced and delicious.’ 'Well balanced for drinking on its own or with light salads or lightly spiced Asian dishes,' said Jonathan Kleeman of The Ritz Hotel.

£6.72 Enotria&Coe

D Diniz, Monte da Ravasqueira, Branco 2014, Alentejo, Portugal

Gold medal winner

Zesty freshness allied with fruit complexity gave D Diniz Gold. ‘White flowers, summer breeze aromas, with rich lemon citrus on the palate and a good finish,’ said Michael Moore of Room 24, with team leader Jade Koch noting: ‘Lychee and cut-apple nose, orange and peach fruit on the palate, zippy and stony with slightly nutty hints on a warm finish.’ Food matches range from lemon-herbed squid via fish dishes to chicken and mushroom pie.

£12.95 Awin Barratt Siegel Wine Agencies

Herdade Monte do Vau, Riso de Sousa Otto & Friends, Branco 2013, Alentejo, Portugal

Silver medal winner

‘Petrolly, almost Riesling, honeyed nose followed by savoury spice and herbaceous notes on a dry palate, with crisp acidity and good body,’ began team leader Jade Koch, adding: ‘Will age well, but has good dryness and would pair well with food now.’

£10.38 Herdade Monte do Vau

Ponte da Barca, Este, Loureiro 2014, Vinho Verde, Portugal

Silver medal winner

‘Very zesty, with lovely grapefruit and citrus notes, fantastic value for money,’ said team leader Annette Scarfe MW, with Vittorio Gentile of Theo Randall at The InterContinental Hotel adding: ‘Flowery, mineral nose with hints of cordial orange, crisp mineral palate and clementine notes on the finish.’

£4.72 Marta Vine

B Supported – International Business, Bonina 2014, Vinho Verde, Portugal

Bronze medal winner

‘Complex, salty, green fruit nose, restrained and delicate stone fruit palate with subtle minerality,’ said Robert Mason of Cheese at Leadenhall, with Vittorio Gentile of Theo Randall at The InterContinental Hotel noting: ‘Fresh lavender floral bouquet, full and creamy texture.’

£6.75 B Supported - International Business

Santo Isidro, Adega de Pegões, Colheita Seleccionada, Branco 2013, Setúbal, Portugal

Bronze medal winner

‘Banana, caramelised banana and oak spices matched on the palate, with quite clean acid. Would pair very nicely with food,’ said Oscar Miller of Vinoteca King's Cross. 'Lovely example of a full-bodied, oaky white,' said team leader Annette Scarfe MW.

£7.07 Hallgarten & Novum Wines

Qunita das Arcas, Conde Villar, Alvarinho 2013, Vinho Verde, Portugal

Bronze medal winner

Chris Wood of Chelsea Vintners found this a ‘serious wine’, saying: ‘Feels great on the palate, good texture and weight, full and mouthwatering, but also has good zip.’ ‘Bold, perfumed complexity, rich stone fruit and apple palate, good roast chicken match,’ added Robert Mason of Cheese at Leadenhall.

£9.54 Bibendum

Quintas de Melgaço, Torre de Menagem 2013, Vinho Verde, Portugal

Bronze medal winner

‘Bone dry, showing typical lemon and lime zest character with good mineral balance,’ began team leader Annette Scarfe MW, with Robert Mason of Cheese at Leadenhall adding: ‘Savoury, saline nose, yellow and green fruit with a background note of spice.’

£7.25 Boutinot

Sogrape, Quinta dos Carvalhais, Encruzado 2011, Dão, Portugal

Bronze medal winner

‘Creamy texture with nutty oxidation, traditional style with oak, citrus, apple and nougat notes, long and rich,’ said team leader Natasha Hughes MW, with Oscar Miller of Vinoteca King's Cross adding: ‘Quite ripe, sun-baked fruit, shows character and nice acidity on a savoury palate.’

£12.88 Sogrape UK

Sogrape, Quinta dos Carvalhais, Reserva Branco 2010, Dão , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£13.42 Sogrape UK

Ribafreixo, Pato Frio, Antão Vaz 2013, Alentejo , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£7.87 Enotria&Coe

Ponte da Barca, Este, Branco 2014, Vinho Verde , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£4.22 Marta Vine

Vidigueira, Reserva Branco 2013, Alentejo, Portugal

Commended medal winner

Lima & Smith, Covela, Escolha Branco 2013, Minho, Portugal

Commended medal winner

£13.30 Lima & Smith

D Diniz, Monte da Ravasqueira, Reserva Branco 2013, Alentejo, Portugal

Commended medal winner

 

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