zaralhoa dry red wine douro portugal

Proud to find: Quinta da Zaralhôa: Dry Red Wine from the Douro in Portugal

Luis and Ana entered the world of wine 15 years ago when Luis’s parents, Tony and Gabby, bought a beautiful property in the heart of the Douro Superior in Portugal. The property was filled with abandoned vineyards and recovering them became the family’s passion.

Today, along with their young daughter, Rita, they are committed to making some of the best wine the Douro has to offer. Along with being natural and sustainable in the vineyard, they continue the tradition of stomping the grapes with their feet in traditional lagares. They believe that it is the best way to crush the grapes because it maximizes the juice’s contact with the skin without crushing the seeds which causes bad flavors. If you are ever in the Douro in October, they’d love your help!

The Cruz Family's vineyards, Quinta da Zaralhôa in Douro, Portugal

Sunset from The Cruz Family’s vineyard Quinta da Zaralhôa in Douro, Portugal

The family harvests their grapes in October, which is considered late in this region. They can do this because their vineyard faces SW, giving it less sun. It is this reduced sun exposure that allows the grapes a longer time to ripen and develop their flavors without excess sugars ruining the acid levels.


Quinta Da Zaralhôa's 2010 Colheita

THE WINE

2010 Colheita, $36
25% each of: Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinta Roriz, Tinta Barroca
2 years in oak, 1 year in the bottle
13.5% alc.

This wine is extremely concentrated in color and flavor. It is highly complex with a long finish. This is due to its terroir (the earth it grows in/around). The vines grow on steep terraced slopes at 450-500 meters. The soil is composed of schist. Schist holds heat, keeping the vines warm on cold nights. It holds water like a sponge, giving the vines just a little at a time. Schist has a vertical grain, which means the roots of the vines are able to break through and travel deep into the earth. The roots are then able to deliver lots of minerals and nutrients to help produce grapes with acidity, minerality and structure. These characteristics are apparent in the wine.

THE PROCESS
The Cruz Family are minimalists in the vineyard. The grapes were manually harvested. Then the wine was aged in oak for two years. Only 1000 cases were produced.

THE PROFILE
It has sensational aromas of purple flowers with a hint of strawberry. On the palate you’ll taste black fruit, and experience rich, soft tannins. It is scrumptious with or without food. Recommended: only 2 people per bottle, you’ll want at least one more glass.

Want to try? Buy it in one of our cases.

 


BTW, natural and delicious wines don't have to be expensive. Have you tried any of ours yet?

Start tasting now