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Home Winners > Winners 2016 > White, including Vinho Verde

Winner Details

Portugal: White, including Vinho Verde

2016 Gold: 3 Silver: 5 Bronze: 5 Commended: 9
2015 Gold: 4 Silver: 2 Bronze: 5 Commended: 7

Portugal’s whites are a well-established hunting ground for good, interesting and (crucially) cheap wines in this competition now – and they continued their success story this year. Overall, Golds might have been slightly down on last year, but with an increased Silver count there was greater strength in depth, and positive feedback more or less throughout.

There was some disappointment at the overall standard of the Vinho Verdes, though the ones that medalled did well (two different-style Golds gives our list a balanced feel), while the other whites covered the full range from light and citrusy to rich and oaky, and were more or less universally popular.

The pricing was keen – and needs to be. Customers, it seems, are happy to be talked into buying these wines (and like them when they do), but they’re unlikely to go much above £35 for them. Still, these are a useful – and increasingly essential – element in any sommelier’s armoury.

FROM THE TASTING TEAMS

‘Portuguese whites can be hard to place. But there’s generally quite a lot of minerality, which makes them very food compatible. In terms of price to style, I’d say Portugal is one of the best countries for whites.’ Damon Little, Restaurant Nathan Outlaw

‘These were unique wines. Putting them on your list is a good way to encourage dialogue with the customer.’ Giancarlo Cuccuru, Brackenbury Wine Rooms

‘[At Hakkasan] we’re good supporters of Vinho Verde and we have one By The Glass that sells very well. They’re good value for money and easy to recommend to guests that want to try something a little bit different.’ Diana Rollan, Hakkasan London

Award winners

Found 23 wines

Portugal

Quinta das Arcas, Conde Villar, Alvarinho, 2014, Vinho Verde , Portugal

Gold medal winner

Fresh, tingling and typical: it adds up to Gold for Quinta das Arcas. 'Rich and quite intense nose with mineral and blossom, dry on the palate with floral and herbal notes,' began Diana Rollan of Hakkasan London, with Robert Mason of Cheese at Leadenhall enjoying its 'salinity, developed apple, peach, honeydew melon and papaya complexity'.

£9.53 Bibendum Wine

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

Gold medal winner

Gold once more for Monte da Ravasqueira with this oak-infused, tropical fruit-laden white with its creamy texture and brisk acids. 'With mineral lees and brioche notes, this is elegant with some sweetness on the finish,' began JKS Restaurants' Piotr Tomaszewski, while Adriana Valentini of Massimo Restaurant & Bar felt it was 'very good for pairing, especially with fish'.

£11.75 Bancroft Wines , ABS Wine Agencies , Bottle Apostle

Adega do Salvador, Portal da Calçada, Reserva, 2015, Vinho Verde , Portugal

Gold medal winner

'Exactly what you want from a Vinho Verde,' declared Robert Mason of Cheese at Leadenhall, continuing: 'Typical melon nose, juicy, peachy, refreshing and easy on the palate.' Sunaina Sethi of JKS Restaurants found it 'floral and perfumed on the nose with a long finish', while The Arts Club's Bart Michelcwicz said: 'Lovely, bright and delicate. Limey and lemony.'

£6.44 Perfect Cellar

Quinta do Crasto, Crasto, Superior, Branco, 2014, Douro , Portugal

Silver medal winner

'Length and depth, good balance of freshness and weight,' said Sue Jones of The Harrow at Little Bedwyn, with team leader Sam Caporn MW quickly concluding: 'Apricot yogurt and vanilla. A lovely, well-balanced and commercial style.'

£15.95 Enotria&Coe

Herdade dos Lagos, HDL, Branco, 2014, Alentejo , Portugal

Silver medal winner

'Stone fuit and peach with a little note of orange. Rich but medium bodied and a slight spritz on the palate, makes this a great summer wine for out on the terrace,' said Giancarlo Cuccuru of Brackenbury Wine Rooms. 'Spritzy, mineral, green and balanced,' agreed Restaurant Nathan Outlaw's Damon Little.

£9.88 Please contact winery for further information

D Diniz, Fonte da Serrana, Branco, 2015, Alentejo , Portugal

Silver medal winner

Ed Verrill of Vinoteca King's Cross found 'floral elderflower and black pepper notes with some tropicality and a fresh, clean finish', while Giuseppe Longobardi of The Cross at Kenilworth highlighted its 'white peach, sea mineral and petrolly notes, with a light petillance on the tongue'.

£7.40 ABS Wine Agencies , Bottle Apostle

Vidigueira, Reserva, Branco, 2013, Alentejo , Portugal

Silver medal winner

Piotr Tomaszewski of JKS Restaurants was impressed with this wine's fruity complexity, finding 'pear, green apple, apricot, mandarin and orange zest' complemented by herbal notes of 'camomile and nettle tea' on a 'smoky, musky, well-balanced and rounded, nutty palate'.

£15.60 Please contact winery for further information

Santo Isidro de Pegões, Adega de Pegões, Colheita Seleccionada, Branco, 2014, Península de Setúbal , Portugal

Silver medal winner

Brackenbury Wine Rooms' Giancarlo Cuccuru enjoyed this wine's 'golden hue, slightly oily texture and white floral character', while Adriana Valentini of Massimo Restaurant & Bar was pleased by its 'citrus zest on the palate and easy-drinking, medium intensity'.

£7.02 Hallgarten & Novum Wines

Azamor, Selected White, 2014, Alentejo , Portugal

Bronze medal winner

'Ripe fruit aromas of white pear and great integrated oak notes, and showing creamy white herbs and basil on the palate,' began Skylon's Marco Maruzzo, while Ed Verrill of Vinoteca King's Cross found 'lemon zest and toast notes on the nose with a bitter almond finish'.

£9.75 Liberty Wines

Vidigueira, Grande Escolha, Branco, 2014, Alentejo , Portugal

Bronze medal winner

'Ginger, tangerine and roasted yellow plums, slightly phenolic but very interesting,' began team leader Sam Caporn MW. 'Fruit forward with honeysuckle and yellow floral notes,' agreed Skylon's Marco Marcuzzo.

£12.68 Please contact winery for further information

Portalegre, Conventual, Reserva, Branco, 2014, Alentejo , Portugal

Bronze medal winner

'Very elegant nose, floral, fruity and aromatic,' said Massimo Restaurant & Bar's Adriana Valentini, who felt its 'long, lingering and balanced finish' made it 'really good value for money'. Giancarlo Cuccuru of Brackenbury Wine Rooms also thought it would be a popular choice thanks to its 'peachy nose and floral notes'.

£9.48 Please contact winery for further information

Santo Isidro de Pegões, Stella, Blanco, Dry Muscat, 2015, Península de Setúbal , Portugal

Bronze medal winner

'A good early-drinking, summery wine, floral and fun,' said JKS Restaurants' Piotr Tomaszewski, continuing: 'Restrained lily of the valley and white petals, elegant body with lemon drops and mineral notes on a long palate. Refreshing and well balanced.'

£5.74 Hallgarten & Novum Wines

Ponte da Barca, Estreia, Colheita Seleccionada, 2015, Vinho Verde , Portugal

Bronze medal winner

Robert Mason of Cheese at Leadenhall felt that its 'saline, savoury palate with peach and apple' would make this wine 'great with shellfish starters', while consultant Claire Love enjoyed its 'textbook style, great balance of fruit and texture'.

£11.26 Atlantico UK

Sogrape, Quinta dos Carvalhais, Branco Especial, NV, Dão , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£19.99 Sogrape UK

Sogrape, Quinta de Azevedo, 2014, Vinho Verde , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£5.88 Sogrape UK

Herdade dos Coelheiros, Tapada de Coelheiros, Chardonnay, 2014, Alentejo , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£10.95 Marta Vine

Horta Osório, HO, Achado, Branco, 2014, Douro , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£8.47 Please contact winery for further information

Adega Mãe, Dory, Branco, 2014, Lisbon , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£5.75 Marta Vine

Gonçalo de Sá da Bandeira, Herdade do Gamito, Terras do Crato, Branco, 2013, Alentejo , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£6.95 Please contact winery for further information

Quinta do Vallado, Prima, Moscatel Galego Branco, 2013, Douro , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£9.91 Bibendum Wine

Reguengo de Melgaço, Alvarinho, 2014, Minho , Portugal

Commended medal winner

Casa da Passarella, A Descoberta, Branco, 2014, Dão , Portugal

Commended medal winner

£8.08 Enotria&Coe

Santo Isidro de Pegões, Fontánario de Pegões, Branco, 2015, Palmela , Portugal

Commended medal winner