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Home Winners > Winners 2016 > Alentejo - Red

Winner Details

Portugal - Alentejo - Red

2016 Gold: 1 Silver: 6 Bronze: 1 Commended: 7
2015 Gold: 0 Silver: 9 Bronze: 6 Commended: 3

This was a section where our tasters wanted to like the wines more than they actually did. There was sympathy for different regions and different grapes (even if our Gold-Listed wine turned out to be a Syrah/Viognier!) but when it came down to it, too many of the initial entrants were a bit tight, a bit lacking in generosity and a bit expensive.

That said, similar criticisms are often levelled at flights of Italian wines, and, as with Chianti et al, these are obviously wines that come into their own with plates of food rather than in a line-up. Get the right wine and make it part of a tasting menu and it can add something genuinely unique. Provided, of course, that you can afford it in the first place.

FROM THE TASTING TEAMS

‘Lots of these were dominated by oak, and not enough originality coming through.’ Diana Rollan, Hakkasan London

‘The Alentejo can produce fantastic wines at the right price. Savoury, expressive fruit that’s not overdone, just honesty and authenticity.’ Anne Krebiehl MW, team leader

‘A lot had depth but some weren’t quite ready to drink. And they were at the higher price points. As for value, the jury’s out.’ Michael Fiducia, Drake’s Restaurant

‘There was good quality throughout, and a lot of ripeness, though it didn’t always match the balance of the wines. Prices could have been a bit lower.’ Erik Simonics, The Savoy

‘A really poor flight. Extracted fruit, overuse of oak, overly dry tannins. And Portuguese wines are a tough sell anyway.’ Claire Love, consultant

‘The price points were a little bit hard to swallow. But the winemaking is good and they’re sympathetic to the grape varieties; they showed clear varietal character.’ Angela Reddin, team leader

“In summertime I stick these on the list as a slightly chilled offering.” Robert Mason, Cheese at Leadenhall

“There’s fear of the unknown with Portuguese wines. I’d have one on By The Glass with a matching dish.” Claire Love, consultant

STAR PERFORMER

Congratulations to Sociedad Agricola D Diniz, whose medals here took its haul this year to two Golds and four Silvers
 

Award winners

Found 15 wines

Portugal: Alentejo – Red

D Diniz, Monte da Ravasqueira, Syrah/Viognier, 2012, Alentejo , Portugal

Gold medal winner

Elegance and style provided Monte da Ravasqueira with one of its Golds. With 'minerals and soft rounded tannins', this is 'subtle and versatile', according to team leader Annette Scarfe MW. Plenty going on here for Hakkasan London's Diana Rollan, too: 'Cedar, leather, black fruit, toasty, big and bold with tobacco notes. Dry, ripe and round on the palate, savoury with ripe tannins and concentration on a long length.'

£14.45 Please contact winery for further information

Gonçalo de Sá da Bandeira, Herdade do Gamito, Vinho Regional Alentejano, 2009, Alentejo , Portugal

Silver medal winner

Michael Fiducia of Drake's Restaurant enjoyed this wine's 'wonderfully rich, rounded nose and dried fruit palate', while team leader Angela Reddin noted: 'Dense berry fruit and oaky spice, quite full without heaviness.'

£9.22 Please contact winery for further information

Herdade dos Lagos, HDL, Reserva Seleção, 2013, Alentejo , Portugal

Silver medal winner

Ivan Vegas of Fox Fine Wines & Spirits found a 'big structure, with intense black fruit aromas, rich tannins which develop into softer character', adding: 'With time it will improve in softness and richness of fruit, and best with food now.' Michael Fiducia of Drake's Restaurant enjoyed its 'subtle Christmas cake nose, depth and power that lasts'.

£23.70 Please contact winery for further information

D Diniz, Monte da Ravasqueira, Touriga Franca, 2012, Alentejo , Portugal

Silver medal winner

Sunaina Sethi of JKS Restaurants found ripe cherries and jasmine notes on a 'lovely, floral nose', followed by 'great balance and well-integrated tannin', while Robert Mason of Cheese at Leadenhall enjoyed its 'winter spice, cinnamon and nutmeg nose, gentle fruit and silky tannin'.

£14.45 Please contact winery for further information

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

Silver medal winner

'Plum and cherry fruitiness on the nose, with some exotic spices. Lovely mouthfeel and great balance here, followed by a fine, long finish,' said team leader Angela Reddin, while Ivan Vegas of Fox Fine Wines & Spirits enjoyed its 'high intensity on the nose'.

£11.75 Bancroft Wines , ABS Wine Agencies , Bottle Apostle

D Diniz, Monte da Ravasqueira, Vinha das Romãs, 2013, Alentejo , Portugal

Silver medal winner

Quite high tannins, noted Ivan Vegas of Fox Fine Wines & Spirits, but 'round and warm, with intense, aromatic, overripe fruits', with team leader Angela Reddin agreeing: 'Needs time, but strong fruit, violets and sweet oak picks up the finish.'

£16.70 Bancroft Wines , ABS Wine Agencies

Vidigueira, Alicante Bouschet, 2014, Alentejo , Portugal

Silver medal winner

'Inky, deep, dark oaky prune and mocha nose, very concentrated, plush, deep fruit flavours,' said team leader Angela Reddin, concluding: 'Palate is superbly balanced and it's very delicious.'

£10.92 Please contact winery for further information

Gonçalo de Sá da Bandeira, Herdade do Gamito, Terras do Crato, Tinto, 2011, Alentejo , Portugal

Bronze medal winner

'Clean but intense,' said Galvin La Chapelle's Aurélien Constant, continuing: 'Red and dark fruit aromas, good structure with sweet spice and liquorice on the palate, medium tannins and nice oak integration.'

£6.95 Please contact winery for further information

Vidigueira, Grande Escolha, Tinto, 2014, Alentejo , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£12.68 Please contact winery for further information

Herdade dos Lagos, HDL, Touriga Nacional, 2014, Alentejo , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£11.73 Please contact winery for further information

Herdade dos Lagos, HDL, Tinto, 2013, Alentejo , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£9.88 Please contact winery for further information

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

Commended medal winner

D Diniz, Monte da Ravasqueira, Petit Verdot, 2012, Alentejo , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£14.45 Please contact winery for further information

Herdade dos Coelheiros, Roda dos Coelhos, 2013, Alentejo , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£5.13 Marta Vine

Vidigueira, Reserva, 2014, Alentejo , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£21.45 Please contact winery for further information