Vera Vinho Verde Branco
When Vera Vinho Verde launched the 2010 vintage we felt a quality vinho verde was missing. Our ambition was to produce a better vinho verde: estate fruit only, less RS and less carbonation; all of which runs against the norm for other offerings from the region. A little known fact about Portuguese winemaking history is that in the 50’s and 60’s, the Portuguese government, under pressure from the wine industry, resisted the arrival of Coca-Cola and soft drinks. Vinho Verdes, with their light alcohol and slight carbonation, were the soft-drink du jour, the drink people could have for lunch or when meeting with a friend. The Vinho Verde DOC is in northwest Portugal, just north of the warm Douro River Valley. It is rainy, mountainous and intensely green. The Basto sub-region where Vera is located is primarily granite soil, planted inland with vines that are between 10 and 35 years old. Cold damp winters are flowed by a mild spring and summer.
WHAT MAKES THIS WINE UNIQUE? Vera Vinho Verde is 100%estate fruit, estate bottled, low RS and a very light carbonation, allowing for a medium bodied and better balanced wine. The fact that fruit comes from the estate’s 104 plots (yes 104!) provides consistent quality from vintage to vintage. Vera Vinho Verde is one of the great offers from Portugal and from the region.
RATING HISTORY: 2014 87 W&S
GRAPE: 60% Arinto, 30% Azal, 10% Loureiro. Vines planted in 1998. Tended in sandy loam, granite and schist at 320 m (1,050 ft) elevation. This is a vegan wine.
PAIRING SUGGESTIONS: Vera’s texture, bright acidity and medium body make it a versatile pairing. Lovely with fried fish, lighter cured meats, sharp cheeses, shellfish and bivalves.
VINIFICATION AND AGEING: Harvest is entirely manual in 20 kg crates. Loureiro is picked first, Arinto is picked by mid-October and Azal sometimes going well into November. De-stemming and gentle pressing. The juice settles for 48 hours before fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks. Filtered prior to bottling which occurs in February.
PRODUCTION: 4,000 cases
LOCATION, SOIL, CLIMATE: Produced from vines planted in 1998, tended in sandy loam, granite and schist soil, at 320m (1,050 ft) elevation. Annual rainfall: 2000 mm (79 inches).
TASTING NOTES: Arinto brings bright acidity and aging potential, Azal is citric and fresh and Loureiro is aromatic and delicate. Clean, lively flavors of lime, ripe pink and yellow grapefruit. Slight effervescence.