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Home Winners > Winners 2018 > Douro - Red

Winner Details

Portugal: Red, Douro

2018 Gold 2       Silver 9                 Bronze 3             Commended 9
2017 Gold 2       Silver 5                 Bronze 4             Commended 8

Anyone who’s ever been to the Douro will appreciate that, with its steep slopes, poor soils and low yields, it’s not a cheap place to make wine. So forget the ‘Portugal is cheap’ idea and start to compare this place with some of the world’s star red wine regions. Suddenly, things start to look rather different – and our tasters, to their credit, understood this.

The feedback here was uniformly positive – certainly for the more top-end wines, with our judges spotting great fruit, good winemaking and genuine class at prices that could really deliver. A hand-sell, perhaps – but a safe one.

FROM THE TASTING TEAMS

‘Even at the lower end, there’s good quality coming through – they’d beat Argentinian Malbec for varietal characteristics and ripeness of fruit.’ Tom Forrest, team leader

‘They totally expressed their region, they couldn’t be from anywhere else.’ Debbie Warner, Wild Wine Club

‘For me some very high-quality wines. Expressing their origin and grape variety. I’d definitely recommend and match these wines with food. Excellent value for money. The Douro has proved itself with fortified wines, now it’s proving itself with dry wines.’ Lazaros Engonopoulos, Coq d’Argent

‘I’m a big fan. In terms of table wines, it’s only [been made for] one and a half generations. So the wines are great, but I don’t think we’ve seen how great they can be.’ Simon Woods, team leader

‘As you move up the prices, you see world-class wines that can compete with anything.’ Andre Luis Martins, Cavalry & Guards Club

Award winners

Found 23 wines

Portugal: Red, Douro Valley

Quinta Vale d'Aldeia, Grande Reserva, Tinto 2014, Douro, Portugal

Gold medal winner

A favourite with our judges, this exceptional Douro wine’s Gold status was beyond question. Andre Luis Martins of Cavalry & Guards Club was impressed with its ‘fresh cassis perfumed with light spice notes’, followed by ‘powerful fruit with spicy richness, complex with a great long finish’, and team leader Simon Woods found it ‘big, deep and dense, polished with vanilla-tinged honey and berry-damson fruit and herbs’. ‘Delicious,’ said Coq d’Argent’s Andrés Ituarte, describing a ‘pepper, clove and cinnamon blend with a long brambly finish’.

£24.68 Quinta Vale D'Aldeia

Quinta Nova, Terroir Blend, Reserva 2015, Douro, Portugal

Gold medal winner

Earning its Gold medal in no small part for its excellent value for money, for Yohann Pinol of Wiltons this was ‘dark and dense’ in colour, leading to ‘pleasant notes of plum, blackberry and a rich texture with soft tannins – well balanced with very good length’. ‘Lovely, pure ripe fruit and a nice finish,’ added Vinoteca’s Charlie Young, while Leonie Loudon of Mediterroenean – Wines of the Mediterranean appreciated its ‘lively acidity, with nice balsamic notes and a touch of tarragon’.

£12.50 Oakley Wine Agencies

Luis Seabra, Indie Xisto, Tinto 2014, Douro, Portugal

Silver medal winner

‘Cured meats and crunchy red fruits on the nose,’ said Beaverbrook’s Euan McColm, who found this wine ‘exciting, with a big dose of tannic structure, the palate mirroring the nose, with complexity and plenty of bang for the buck’.

£9.47 Berkmann Wine Cellars

Quinta do Crasto, Crasto, Superior, Red 2015, Douro, Portugal

Silver medal winner

Team leader Simon Woods enjoyed this wine’s ‘rich, clean, juicy aromas of plummy fruit, with blackcurrant on the palate and a tangy, earthy finish’, while Beaverbrook’s Euan McColm felt it showed ‘sour cherries with Lego brick tannins and very pure, ripe fruit’.

£13.28 Enotria&Coe

Quinta das Tecedeiras, Flor das Tecedeiras, Tinto 2015, Douro, Portugal

Silver medal winner

Aurel Istrate of The Connaught found ‘fresh, red and black fruits, not too oaky’, while Wild Wine Club’s Debbie Warner admired the ‘rustic, brambly style with crunchy tannins, sensible use of oak and a juicy, crisp finish’.

£12.25 Clark Foyster Wines

Sogrape, Casa Ferreirinha, Vinha Grande, Tinto 2015, Douro, Portugal

Silver medal winner

Vinoteca’s Charlie Young liked the ‘warm, bready aromas’, finding the palate ‘good, dry, dark and chewy but underpinned by ripe, dark berry fruit’, while Coq d’Argent’s Lazaros Engonopoulos noted ‘bright red and black fruit, herbs and dried leaves, juicy and very easy drinking’.

£9.34 Liberty Wines

Sogrape, Casa Ferreirinha, Callabriga, Tinto 2015, Douro, Portugal

Silver medal winner

A pleasing package, presenting ‘quite clean and well-defined black fruit aromas’, began Vinoteca’s Charlie Young, adding: ‘Pretty, and on top you have lovely fine tannins and a pure, clear, dry finish.’

£12.94 Liberty Wines

Sogrape, Casa Ferreirinha, Quinta da Leda, Tinto 2015, Douro, Portugal

Silver medal winner

Plenty of depth and character here, said Markus Dilger of Dilger Sommelier Selection, who found ‘dark chocolate, plum and black cherry with violet floral notes and cedar wood, fresh acidity and minerality on the palate, which finishes long with balanced oak, good potential’.

£28.95 Liberty Wines

Alves de Sousa, Quinta da Gaivosa, Tinto 2013, Douro, Portugal

Silver medal winner

Team leader Tom Forrest picked out this wine’s ‘spicy French oak cinnamon and cedar spice with perfumed fruits’, while Debbie Warner of Wild Wine Club thought its ‘mouthwatering sour cherry, spice and blackcurrant with firm tannic structure’ would be a ‘great match for grilled meats’.

£27.59 Atlantico UK, Top Selection

Alves de Sousa, Quinta da Gaivosa, Vinha de Lordelo, Tinto 2013, Douro, Portugal

Silver medal winner

Euan McColm of Beaverbrook found this an ‘elegant wine’, yet at the same time ‘chocolatey and unctuous’, adding: ‘There’s lots more to it, to give a great balance of oak, dried fruit, dried meats and dark forest fruits.’ ‘Rich and fleshy, smells expensive, is polished and fine-boned, relaxed and confident,’ thought team leader Simon Woods.

£37.62 Atlantico UK, Top Selection

Alves de Sousa, Vale da Raposa, Grande Escolha 2015, Douro, Portugal

Silver medal winner

Wild Wine Club’s Debbie Warner enjoyed this wine’s ‘dark, concentrated blackcurrant fruit with firm structure, black pepper spice and a fresh finish’, while Cosimo Di Totero of Chiltern Firehouse praised its ‘high concentration of fruit, good tannin structure, acidity and oak integration’.

£23.17 Atlantico UK, Top Selection

Sogevinus, Kopke, Douro Red 2016, Douro, Portugal

Bronze medal winner

‘Perfumed and floral on the nose with violet and rose,’ said team leader Tom Forrest, who liked its ‘soft, ripe red fruit palate, then some tobacco notes on a finish that’s drying but not bitter’.

£8.25 Hayward Bros

Quinta do Crasto, Crasto, Superior, Syrah, Duriense 2015, Douro, Portugal

Bronze medal winner

‘Sweet, ripe floral notes, jammy fruit and oak on the nose,’ began team leader Tom Forrest, also noting its ‘overripe jammy fruit palate and attractive spicy pepper after’, with Cosimo Di Totero of Chiltern Firehouse highlighting a ‘big oak flavour, vanilla and toasty coconut’.

£15.28 Enotria&Coe

Alves de Sousa, Quinta da Oliveirinha, Grande Reserva, Tinto 2013, Douro, Portugal

Bronze medal winner

Coq d’Argent’s Lazaros Engonopoulos found ‘black berries and a chocolate biscuity character, with a touch of minerality on a powerful, complex wine with great potential’, while Vinoteca’s Charlie Young enjoyed a ‘blackcurrant hit on the nose, big tannins, purity and freshness, power, too, but it works very well!’

£21.00 Top Selection

Sogevinus, Kopke, Reserva, Red 2015, Douro, Portugal

Commended medal winner

£12.70 Hayward Bros

Quinta da Cassa, Cassa, Tinto 2015, Douro, Portugal

Commended medal winner

Quinta Vale d'Aldeia, Xaino, Selection 2014, Douro Superior, Portugal

Commended medal winner

Quinta Nova, Pomares, Tinto 2015, Douro, Portugal

Commended medal winner

Quinta Nova, Unoaked Red 2015, Douro, Portugal

Commended medal winner

Authentic Wines, Quinta da Silveira, Tinto 2011, Douro, Portugal

Commended medal winner

Quinta das Tecedeiras, Reserva 2015, Douro, Portugal

Commended medal winner

Quinta do Vallado, Reserva, Tinto 2015, Douro, Portugal

Commended medal winner

£24.57 Bibendum

Cardanhos, Espinho, Colheita 2014, Douro, Portugal

Commended medal winner

 

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