The Reserva is the jewel of the Casa de Santar portfolio. This deep colored wine has attractive aromas of chocolate, smoke, raisins and warm fruits, with a distinctively spicy edge. Velvety on the palate, its brilliant blackberry-like flavors are accented with notes of roasted coffee, herbs and tobacco. The creamy texture is lush, the finish earthy and satisfying.
"The historic vineyard of Casa de Santar in the heart of the Dao region has produced a dense and powerful offering, with rich tannins and black fruits. Its intense, solid blackberry and spice flavors are followed by acidity, contributing complexity. Cellar Selection."
"The 2008 Reserva (Casa De Santar) is a blend of Touriga Nacional (40%), Alfrocheiro (25%) and Tinta Roriz (35%), aged for 12 months in new French oak. In some comparisons, I’ve liked the current Tinto release as much as the oakier, less evolved Reserva release of the moment, but not this year. This adds a layer of depth and more solidity to the mid-palate. It also has far better structure. It then retains the same elegant sensibilities. While neither an obvious nor a "wow" wine, it is beautifully constructed, impeccably balanced and likely to develop well in the cellar even though it is very nice now as well. As time goes on, it might separate more from the regular Tinto, but it is a bit too oak-tinged at the moment, typical for how it shows when young and as a new release."
The Wine Advocate
Big & Bold
This is a bold, in your face, red. Not for beginners! It was rich, complex with tannins being a little forward, otherwise fairly balanced.
Big & Bold
The wine was hard at first, very tannic which hid the fruit. It took more than 1/2 hour for it to open up but really only after taken with food did this wine really flourish. Not for the wimpy drinker. Although I'm liberal with combination of wine and food, this one needs meat as a compliment, even spicy.