A fortified wine named after the steep, volcanic, solitary island ...
A fortified wine named after the steep, volcanic, solitary island from which it comes, Madeira, the wine, was born more or less out of a mistake, as is the case with many wine styles of the world.
During the 1600s and 1700s, this island was an important pit stop for sea treks to the Americas and East Indies. Shippers would load up on the wine made here during their journey across the Atlantic. Given Madeira’s likelihood to spoil on the way, they added a little high proof alcohol (likely distilled from cane sugar) to help preserve it. The subsequent heating and cooling of the casks, as they made their way across the sea, deepened and improved the wines’ flavors.
Five different grape varieties are used. Tinta Negra is the main red variety. Its versitility makes it ideal for the more everyday styles. Sercial shows lemony, spice and herbal notes with a stony mineral character and make great aperitif wines. Verdelho is smoky and dry and pairs with a variety of foods. Boal is complex with flavors of roasted coffee, caramel, cocoa and dates. Malmsey is the sweetest and fruitiest with roasted nut and chocolate notes.
Broadbent 10 Year Malmsey MadeiraMadeira from Madeira, Portugal