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Quinta de Vale de Pios Excomungado 2013

Other Red Blends from Douro, Portugal
    750ML / 13% ABV
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    750ML / 13% ABV

    Winemaker Notes

    Lush and intense fruit with robust tannin from stems, not oak.

    Enjoy with beef stew, braised beef, filet mignon, strip steak, venison, lean cuts of beef cuisine: portuguese, brazilian, argintine, american

    Blend: Touriga Nacional 40%, Touriga Franca 25%, Tinta Cao 25%, Tinta Roriz 10%

    Critical Acclaim

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    Quinta de Vale de Pios

    Quinta de Vale de Pios

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    Quinta de Vale de Pios, Portugal
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    Joaquim is a one man team planting, tending to, harvesting, and vinifying the wines in his tiny cellar about 6 miles west of the Spanish border in the “hamlet” of Barca d’Alva. This region is particularly inhospitable to farming - only 6 inches of rain per year give this essentially desert climate the ability to grow only grapes, olives, and an assortment of shrubs. The soil is a variable mosaic of broken quartz, granite, shale, and clay with temperatures peaking well over 95 degrees daily in the summer. The night time temperatures drop to the upper 50s and provide a great level of freshness and acidity to the grapes.

    The winery tries to combine the best of the old traditions with modern practices. Older traditions include the use of mills for the “cut”, and using a thin layer of carbon dioxide for better extraction. These are combined with modern vinification technology, like extended fermentation in vats using temperature and reassembly control undoubtedly makes the finished wines less aggressive. The wines age in new french oak wood barrels in a warehouse with thick stone walls that are able to control the thermal inertia, allowing good conditions of temperature and moisture before bottling. Wines are aged until they are ready to be enjoyed; they are not released as soon as possible.

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    The home of Port—perhaps the most internationally acclaimed beverage—the Douro region of Portugal is one of the world’s oldest delimited wine regions, established in 1756. The vineyards of the Douro, set on the slopes surrounding the Douro River (known as the Duero in Spain), are incredibly steep, necessitating the use of terracing and thus, manual vineyard management as well as harvesting. The Douro's best sites, rare outcroppings of Cambrian schist, are reserved for vineyards that yield high quality Port.

    While more than 100 indigenous varieties are approved for wine production in the Douro, there are five primary grapes that make up most Port and the region's excellent, though less known, red table wines. Touriga Nacional is the finest of these, prized for its deep color, tannins and floral aromatics. Tinta Roriz (Spain's Tempranillo) adds bright acidity and red fruit flavors. Touriga Franca shows great persistence of fruit and Tinta Barroca helps round out the blend with its supple texture. Tinta Cão, a fine but low-yielding variety, is now rarely planted but still highly valued for its ability to produce excellent, complex wines.

    White wines, generally crisp, mineral-driven blends of Arinto, Viosinho, Gouveio, Malvasia Fina and an assortment of other rare but local varieties, are produced in small quantities but worth noting.

    With hot summers and cool, wet winters, the Duoro has a maritime climate.

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    Other Red Blends

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    With hundreds of red grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World, experimentation is permitted and encouraged. Blending can be utilized to enhance balance or create complexity, lending different layers of flavors and aromas. For example, a variety that creates a fruity and full-bodied wine would do well combined with one that is naturally high in acidity and tannins. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.

    ALWQPEX13_2013 Item# 215005