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Cristiano Van Zeller Quinta Do Vale D. Maria Vinho Tinto 2009

Other Red Blends from Portugal
  • RP96
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Winemaker Notes

Quinta Vale D. Maria Douro Reds are incredibly deep in color, violet, dark red and purple, have a tremendous concentration of mature dark red fruit aromas, with a very typical predominance and blackberries, black cherries and plums. The aging in cask is concentrating the original mature tannins of the wine and has smoothened its power, originating very powerful, though very elegant wines with great balance and finesse and a very long and fruity finish.

Critical Acclaim

RP 96
The Wine Advocate

The 2009 Tinto (Quinta Vale D. Maria) is a Douro field blend. This year, it has a sexiness to it that is captivating. Yet, that is certainly not all it has. The structure is impressive as is the balance, although it may need a few years to get where it’s going. The tannins are obvious, sometimes hard edged, but they are ultimately going to integrate. In its youth, the oak is also a touch obvious, but it is equally clear that will integrate, too. This seemed easy to categorize early on as sexy, ripe and tasty. There is tremendous potential here, mostly submerged at the moment. For every 15 minute interval it was open, it changed and got better. Put this in the cellar and come back in 5-6 years. Let it show you what it has. It will be a contender for one of the best Vale D. Marias. It will be a contender for wine of the vintage. It is tremendous. Drink 2014-2030.

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Cristiano Van Zeller

Cristiano Van Zeller

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Cristiano Van Zeller, , Portugal
Cristiano Van Zeller
Cristiano Van Zeller, previous owner and director of Quinta do Noval, is launching a range of new ports under the De Zellaer label. Zellaer is the medieval spelling of the name Van Zeller. The Ports come partly from Cristiano's own vineyards in the Douro, Quinta Vale da Mina and Quinta Vale D. Maria, and are partly selected from special stocks in Vila Nova de Gaia that are made available to Cristiano. Cristiano has tried to move away from the mainstream port styles, offering special ports like the Unfiltered Reserve from his own vineyards and his personal Selection Tawny. The LBV comes from his own Quinta Do Vale Da Mina and in good years Vintage Port, from both his quintas will be produced. Some outstanding red table wines from the single quintas are made.

Famous for its food-friendly, approachable wines and their storied history...

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Famous for its food-friendly, approachable wines and their storied history, Chianti is perhaps the best-known wine region of Italy. This sub-zone of Tuscany has it all—sweeping views of undulating hills, the hot Mediterranean sun, hearty cuisine, and a rich artistic heritage. Historically packaged in short, round, straw-covered bottles known as “fiaschi” and containing insipid red liquid, Chianti today is typically not your Italian grandfather’s pizza wine. The heart of the Chianti zone is known as Chianti Classico, as the region has expanded its boundaries over time to capitalize on the wine’s fame, thus diluting its reputation. Within Chianti there are seven other subzones with unique characteristics, including Colli Senesi, Colli Fiorentini, and Chianti Rufina.

Chianti wines are made primarily of Sangiovese, with other varieties comprising up to 20% of the blend. Generally, local varieties are used, including Canaiolo, Mammolo, and Marzemino, but international varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah have also been approved in more recent years. Basic, inexpensive Chianti is simple and fruit-forward and makes a great companion to any casual dinner involving red sauce. At its apex, it is savory and rustic with high acidity, firm tannins, and notes of tart red fruit, dried herbs, fennel, salami, balsamic vinegar, and smoky tobacco. Chianti Riserva, typically the top bottling of a producer, can benefit handsomely from a decade or two of cellaring.

Sangiovese

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The perfect intersection of bright fruit and savory earthiness...

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The perfect intersection of bright fruit and savory earthiness, Sangiovese is the backbone variety in Tuscany. While it is best known as the chief component of Chianti, it reaches the height of its power and intensity in the complex, long-lived Brunello di Montalcino. Elsewhere throughout Italy, it can make inexpensive wines for daily consumption ranging from inoffensive to deliciously easy. On the French island of Corsica, under the name Nielluccio, it produces excellent bright and refreshing red and rosé wines with a personality of their own. Sangiovese has also enjoyed moderate popularity in California and Washington State over the last few decades.

In the Glass

Sangiovese is a medium-bodied red with savory flavors of tart cherry, plum, tomato, fresh tobacco, anise, thyme, oregano, and dried earth. High-quality, well-aged examples will take on notes of smoke, clay pot, leather, gamey meat, potpourri, and dried fruits. Corsican Nielluccio is distinguished by a subtle perfume of dried flowers.

Perfect Pairings

Sangiovese is the ultimate pizza and pasta red—its high acidity, moderate alcohol, and grainy tannins create an affinity with tomato-based dishes, spicy meats, and anything off the barbecue.

Sommelier Secret

Although it is the star variety of Tuscany, cult-classic “Super-Tuscan” wines may contain no Sangiovese at all! Since the 1970s, local winemakers have been producing big, bold wines (with price tags to match) that are typically monovarietal or a blend of one or more of several international varieties—usually Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, or Syrah—with or without Sangiovese.

AIWQDVMVT_2009 Item# 114498

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