Saturday, March 14, 2009

LeDomduVin: 2006 Marques de Montemor Vinho Tinto Alentejano Portugal

2006 Marquês de Montemor Vinho Tinto Alentejano Portugal
Suggested retail price $9-$11
Imported by Savio Soares in NYC

Imported by Savio Soares, who likes to bring unknown, low-production wines from small artisan winemakers using biodynamic, organic or sustainable culture, this little red has been the Portuguese delight of the store since we put it on the shelves.

Marquês de Montemor (Plansel) is a tiny winery located in the province of Alentejo (south-central Portugal), a wine region to the southeast of Lisbon (Lisboa in Portuguese), surrounding the city of Evora.

Alentejo is the warmest wine region in Portugal. Despite wheat, the main crop there, this hot region has dry, poor soils with a somewhat medium to low average rainfall, which represents the ideal conditions for growing Olives trees, Cork trees, fruit trees and, of course, vines. The weather is mainly affected by the Continental and Mediterranean climate (despite its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean) and warm winds coming from North Africa. Thus, it produces predominantly ripe, concentrated, earthy, rich red wines that critics often consider more "New World" in style, alcohol level and concentration.

With the assistance of Pablo Laureano, one of the main wine authorities in Portugal, the oenologist Dorina Lindemann produces the wines for Plansel, a small producer of Alentejo. Plansel, a wine by Quinta S. Jorge, produces rich yet elegant, harmonious, modern wines under different labels, like Marquês de Montemor Alentejano.

Plansel belongs to the Viveiros Jorge Böhm group (owned by Hans Joerg Boehm), one of the major Portuguese and world-leading companies specialising in clonal breeding of grape varieties and recovering many indigenous grape varieties in both Portugal and Spain. Dorina is the daughter of Mr Boehm (or Böhm).

"The aim of Plansel is to protect and bring back the old historic varieties and make them known to the world again," reported Mr Boehm (info taken from

To preserve the fresh, fruity aromas and flavours, the wine was produced, fermented, and then aged for 6 months in stainless steel tanks. Named after the ruler of the original lands in this area, Marquês de Montemor is made from 40% Aragonês (also known as Tempranillo in Spain), 30% Touriga Nacional (one of the main and finest red grape varieties of Portugal) and 30% Trincadeira (a Portuguese red grape variety achieving great results in a warm climate). The resulting wine is a fruity, juicy, earthy, balanced little red. Medium-bodied with an intense purple robe, ripe, earthy dark berry notes and an easy-going finish, it is a versatile wine suited for any occasion with or without food (but with food, it will be better).



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