Quinta do Crasto Douro Touriga Nacional 2015
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
The 2015 Touriga Nacional was aged for 16 to 18 months in new, light-toast French oak (two different vineyard plots averaging 35 years in vine age, fermented separately). A selection of the best barrels, it comes in at 14.4% alcohol. This is the first Touriga Nacional offering since the 2012. When first seen about a year ago, it was lovely. It is more aromatic and sensual now but still very unevolved. It still has that subtle concentration to make you feel every ounce of the fruit on the palate while never seeming jammy. The tannins are very ripe, making this easy to approach right now, but there is grip on the finish and the fruit lingers beautifully. It is very suave and refined. This has upside potential in the cellar. It is certainly a star. I'm not yet fully convinced it is a superstar, but it may one day get there. For the moment, let's be a bit conservative again. There were just 6,808 bottles produced, plus some large-format bottles.
Nestled on a privileged location in the Douro, Quinta do Crasto is one of the oldest winemaking estates in the region – the name ‘Crasto’ is derived from the Latin word ‘castrum’, which means ‘Roman fort’. The first known references to Quinta do Crasto can be traced back to 1615, long before the Douro became the world’s first Demarcated Wine Region in 1756. In the early 1900s, Quinta do Crasto was purchased by Constantino de Almeida, the founder of the famous Constantino Port house. Today, his granddaughter, Leonor Roquette, and her husband Jorge Roquette own and manage the estate, together with their sons, Miguel and Tomás. The Roquette family has invested tremendous time, attention, and resources to rebuild and expand the vineyards and facilities to produce top quality Port and Douro table wines. Vineyard mapping, DNA-matched replanting, a new state-of-the-art wine cellar and centuries of tradition mean that no detail in the winemaking and vineyard management is overlooked.
Quinta do Crasto produces different styles of port and table wines each year. Together with their winemakers and their entire team, they seek to produce year after year wines that display the unique and beautiful characteristics of the Douro, through a tireless devotion to tradition, integrity and excellence.
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.
Gaining great popularity for its bold but beautifully aromatic dry red wines, Touriga Nacional is the noblest variety in Port wine. Most likely originating from the Dão region, today it grows throughout the Douro Valley as well. Somm Secret—As many as 80 grape varieties can be used to make Port wine, each contributing something unique to the resulting blend. Touriga Nacional adds great color, tannins and aromatics.