Posts Tagged : Esporão

Esporão – Monte Velho red 2015 and Quinta dos Murças Reserva 2011

Text João Barbosa | Translation Bruno Ferreira

The Alentejo and the Douro regions are two of the most renowned Portuguese wine regions. More than looking at the sales numbers, which can hide arguments about preferences, the live voice says a lot about the reasons of the choices.

Here, in these two regions, are produced wines easy to please, and that’s no motive for censorship … yes, as in almost everything, there are defenders that say that only the difficult, angular, complicated or eccentric things are good. So, for me, the easiness of liking is not synonymous of poor quality or pleasure incompatibility.

Companies exist to make profit, and naturally many firms produce in these two regions or at least market with their own brand wine that they purchase on one of them. The Esporão is one of the companies that advanced from the plains to the mountains.

The Esporão is a project of anticipation. Joaquim Bandeira realized the potential of the region, that at the time was very focused on cereal and cork production. José Roquette understood the vision and went with the idea.

Its foundation happened in 1972 and the venture would eventually be postponed due to the Reforma Agrária (Agrarian reform), Marxist-inspired, which took place after the 25 April 1974 revolution. After the revolutionary period and the entrance in the then European Economic Community (1986), came the calm period that allowed the economy to proceed smoothly.

The Herdade do Esporão in Reguengos de Monsaraz, was restored in 1979. The winery was only completed in 1985, the year in which the first wine was released, and whose label features a John Hogan painting.

Ever since that first wine that the firm illustrates each vintage with artistic works. The principle has been followed since the Quinta dos Murtas’ first edition, located in the Douro, where photography is the art chosen.

Art is not the Esporão’s sole eccentricity. The firm has adopted a sustainable agriculture policy, with recovery of watercourses, soils, flora and fauna – something that has also helped saving in pesticides.

Another madness was the new winery, built in the traditional mud system, which allows the building’s climate control without having to resort to demanding and costly refrigeration appliances.

Another oddity is the respect for the historical heritage, the preservation of a medieval tower, an arch and a Renaissance chapel, and the excavation of a vast archaeological area with remains of up to 3,000 years before Christ.

These crazy things – synonyms that I left unquoted for more creasing – are called respect and intelligence. Respect for nature and the ancestral wisdom and intelligence because they result in cost savings.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão-Monte Velho red 2015 esporão Esporão - Monte Velho red 2015 and Quinta dos Murças Reserva 2011 Blend All About Wine Espor  o Monte Velho red 2015

Monte Velho red 2015 – Photo Provided by Esporão | All Rights Reserved

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão-Quinta dos Murças Reserva 2011 esporão Esporão - Monte Velho red 2015 and Quinta dos Murças Reserva 2011 Blend All About Wine Espor  o Quinta dos Mur  as Reserva 2011

Quinta dos Murças Reserva 2011 – Photo Provided by Esporão | All Rights Reserved

Now that the company Esporão is presented, let’s advance to the two wines that justify this text. The Monte Velho red 2015 (Regional Alentejo) and Quinta dos Murças Reserva 2011 (Douro).

The Monte Velho red 2015 marks the 25th anniversary of the brand and the label is illustrated with a pattern of Alentejo traditional blankets. This wine was made with Aragonês, Trincadeira, Touriga nacional and Syrah grapes.

It is a wine to be drunk casually. It’s not a big wine, a nectar for special occasions. It can be classified as a safe bet, because vintage after vintage remains in a regular level of quality.

The Quinta dos Murças Reserva 2011 is more demanding. It’s a blend of Tinta Roriz, Tinta Amarela, Tinta Barroca, Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Sousão and some more that the producer does not mention specifically. Grapes from vines with over 40 years. The fruit was foot treaded in granite lagares and in a vertical press. It aged one year in barrels of French and American oak.

It’s a nectar that shows the Douro and wants food to eat slowly. It’s from the 2011 vintage, a year of excellence in the country and in the region. To be drank before the arrival of the tremendous nights of heat of summer. Or wait for cooler times.

Contacts
Herdade do Esporão
Apartado 31,
7200-999
Reguengos de Monsaraz, Évora – Alentejo
Tel: (+351) 266 509 280
Fax: 351 266 519 753
Email: reservas@esporao.com
Website: www.esporao.com

Esporão Verdelho 2004, from the cellar to the table

Text João Pedro de Carvalho | Translation Jani Dunne

In my early oenophile days, I acquired the habit of long-term wine saving in my cellar. The idea is and will always be to feed my curiosity for watching some of them evolve, as well as the absolute need for keeping another few wines that end up forgotten in there for many years. Those who like wines and who like to enjoy them are usually naturally curious; being curious is part of the condition of being human. That same curiosity makes us want to know a little more about how wines will behave through time, and even how time can educate them or not. What can be taken for certain is that risk is always a factor worth remembering, especially when the wines we keep have no kind of history to back them, ensuring that our patience will prove successful. The exception is all the wines that need to rest for a spell because they are too young and have edgy tannins. And then, a few dozens, then hundreds of bottles end up piled up by type or region. I promise you, the hardest part is beginning all this process. So far, surprises have almost always turned out well; there is always something to learn from these comparisons of the wine when it was young against the adult version it became. Some appear tired and reveal somewhat pronounced wrinkles of old age.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão Verdelho 2014-Bottles esporão Esporão Verdelho 2004, from the cellar to the table Blend All About Wine Espor  o 2014 Bottles

“Cellar” – Photo by João Pedro de Carvalho | All Rights Reserved

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão Verdelho 2014 Bottle esporão Esporão Verdelho 2004, from the cellar to the table Blend All About Wine Espor  o 2014 Bottle

Esporão Verdelho 2004 – Photo by João Pedro de Carvalho | All Rights Reserved

Very recently, on the occasion of a dinner with friends at my place, I decided to salvage one of those wines I have been keeping in the cellar, a Esporão Verdelho 2004. This 11 year-old white is a risk, or a moment of insanity – some might say. As it turns out, however, this Verdelho was very able to achieve the wow factor usually only observed in great wines. That factor emerges when most of the people present let a faint smile slip after they taste the wine in their glass and mutter the word “Wow.” I tasted this wine time and again when it was first released into the market. I liked it so much, that I decided to save a few bottles. This may have been the last surviving Verdelho 2004, that revealed envious freshness on the mouth and nose, all the fruit that used to be fresh and is now embraced in syrup, and slightly sweetened, with vegetal touches of herbal tea and a bouquet of flowers, everything is very well composed, forming a serious and adult wine with very well-set values. On the mouth, freshness and a hint of creaminess rolls the fruit round the palate; the latter appears solid and with very good presence, and providing a lot of pleasure when you drink it at first, and again, and again, tirelessly.

This is one of the reasons why I store wine; especially curiosity, but also the satisfaction of having the opportunity to later share them with people who can appreciate their value. The only downside is when a bottle is dried out and we ask ourselves why we didn’t store a few extra bottles.

Contacts
Herdade do Esporão
Apartado 31, 7200-999
Reguengos de Monsaraz
Tel: (+351) 266 509280
Fax: (+351) 266 519753
E-mail: reservas@esporao.com
Website: esporao.com

Chili con vino (Esporão)

Text Ilkka Sirén

“What do you eat in Finland?” That’s a question I hear a lot. People wait me to give all kinds of exotic answers like that I eat raw bear meat and I have my own moose that I ride to work every day. It’s not quite like that. We have plenty of traditional dishes but most of them we might eat once a year. We don’t have a thing like bacalhau in Portugal that we eat almost daily or at least weekly. Finns do not generally use a lot of spices in their food and to be honest the food here can be sometimes quite bland. On the other hand people here really appreciate the natural flavors of good ingredients. Vegetables, roots, berries and mushrooms are some of the most treasured things here in the cold north. But as a fan of for example Thai and Vietnamese cuisine I enjoy strong savory foods with a bit of heat.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Chili-con-vino-swirl-Esporão esporão Chili con vino (Esporão) Blend All About Wine Chili con vino swirl

Swirl – Photo by Ilkka Sirén | All Rights Reserved

Blend-All-About-Wine-Chili-con-vino-tortilha-Esporão esporão Chili con vino (Esporão) Blend All About Wine Chili con vino tortilha

Tortilla – Photo by Ilkka Sirén | All Rights Reserved

Now that we are on our way towards another harsh winter we sit and wait for the leaves to fall and cover everything with beautiful colors. The transition from summer to autumn in Finland is swift. As we speak the nights are getting colder and who knows, we might have first snow next month already. Indeed summer is just a distant dream at this point. This translates directly into one’s kitchen, especially mine. Not only that I start cooking up hearty dishes and pickling literally everything, I also see autumn in my personal drink selection. But let’s come back to that later.

Tortillas, tacos, burritos and carnitas are far from being authentic Finnish cuisine but I must say that I’m a fan. Tortilla itself, the thin flatbread, is merely an elaborate vehicle for all things delicious; in this case a fiery habanero and naga jolokia chili con carne. Even though the infamous naga jolokia chili is about 400 times hotter than Tabasco sauce the idea is not to nuke your palate. I’m keen to create a balanced, powerful but most of all flavorful sauce. I don’t always succeed.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Chili-con-vino-Esporão-Reserva-2011 esporão Chili con vino (Esporão) Blend All About Wine Chili con vino Espor  o Reserva 2011

Esporão Reserva 2011 – Photo by Ilkka Sirén | All Rights Reserved

The question is what to serve with this kind of dish? My natural impulse was “go beer or go home”. Beer, yes, it’s definitely the easiest match but there must be something else. Many would have gone with an off-dry white, a riesling perhaps. The sweetness balancing the heat of the chili and so on. Sure, that could work but for this particular occasion it was too elegant. Tortillas are all but elegant. They are sloppy, messy and delicious. I wanted something with proper cojones. Enter Esporão Reserva 2011. A sturdy blend of Alicante Bouschet, Aragonês, Cabernet Sauvignon and Trincadeira. Black and dense like the tree on the label. A godsend for our cold dark nights. Esporão Reserva 2011 is definitely a wine you can and should forget in your basement for a year or twelve but with the spicy chili con carne the match was brilliant. At first I thought it would be an assault on the senses. Well, there was a lot of action on the palate when this ample Alentejano collided with the chili. But when the dust settled there was a tasty and slightly surprising marriage of flavors. If you are not used to chili the combination might be overwhelming but if you love chili like I do you just might discover something special.

Esporão’s history and its wines

Text João Barbosa | Translation Jani Dunne

Reguengos de Monsaraz is a town 170 kilometres away from the ocean coastline. For centuries, even millennia, fog in that area of Alentejo would be an extremely rare phenomenon. Building the Alqueva dam in the Guadiana river led to creating the biggest artificial lake in Europe – despite some people disagreeing – and made the fog more common.

I won’t even begin – not even briefly – to list the advantages and disadvantages of building the dam in Economic, Environmental and Social terms. However, I will mention that the water has proven useful for watering the vines, which multiplied all over Alentejo. The property development was discussed for the first time in the mid-60s, and the business project for Herdade do Esporão was “launched” in 1973 – so to speak, because it was postponed for years for reasons other than the businessmen’s will.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão_JB esporão Esporão's history and its wines Blend All About Wine Espor  o JB

Esporão – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

Esporão started as Joaquim Bandeira’s “fantasy”, whose insight was quite progressive; he wanted to plant a great vineyard in Alentejo. He challenged José Roquette, who left banking behind to embrace the new company.

The dictatorship fell in 1974, and in 1975, the Government reinforced the plan to build the dam even though they had decades to go before it was to be erected. Also in that year, Herdade do Esporão was occupied as part of the Agricultural Reform. In 1978, the property was returned, albeit under the obligation of selling the grapes to the local cooperative.

ADN containing not only wine

Before I go into wine poetry, I would like to mention something I consider highly relevant in the business world, which is social responsibility, in a broad sense. Be it in direct support of the arts or human heritage, to culture and the environment, it’s written in the DNA of Herdade do Esporão that the place wants to be more than a winery.

The first vintage, which would turn into the first own-brand wine took place in 1985; it would later be released in 1987. The first child was Reserva Tinto and, from the first edition, the labels have always included a work of art. The consecrated John Hogan was chosen for the premiere, but, unfortunately for the company, the painting is not included in the collection.

For the sake of culture, I must mention the preservation of the Tower of Esporão, a small medieval fort, and with that the preservation of an archaeological discovery in Herdade dos Perdigões (the land was bought in 1995, and the discovery was made in 1996). The discovered place dates back to some time between the third and fourth millennia before Christ. Countless businessmen would have supported, both actively and financially, what was considered an undesirable setback.

In 2006, João Roquette took over the manager role, having started a restructuring and replantation of the vineyards, and having adopted an environmental policy with the aim of recovering and recreating habitats, putting Nature to work, and using less treatments with pesticides.

Another act of the mission to put things in order is the new cellar, which was recently completed, and built out of rammed earth – an abandoned and almost forgotten method. In the old days, many cellars in Alentejo were built that way, and for a reason: coolness. The earth, gravel and wood enable continued airing and regular temperature… i.e. saving energy.

The main actors

Wine isn’t the company’s excuse. Concerns are the answer to the impact caused by agricultural or industrial activity. This brings up two reds – wearing Alberto Carneiro’s work – and two whites.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão-Reserva-red-2011 esporão Esporão's history and its wines Blend All About Wine Espor  o Reserva red 2011

Esporão Reserva Red 2012 – Photo by Esporão | All Rights Reserved

Esporão Reserva Red 2012 is a cannon ball, with its 14.5% alcohol. Come to think of it, that makes it sound heavy. Wrong! It’s a refreshing wine. In fact, the company’s experience and the success of this reference keep it up there on that level of reliability and prestige. It was made with Alicante Bouschet, Aragonês, Cabernet Sauvignon, Trincadeiras and other grapes. The fruit and wood are balanced, and it shows promise of living for a good number of years.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão-Private-Selection-red-2011 esporão Esporão's history and its wines Blend All About Wine Espor  o Private Selection red 2011

Esporão Private Selection red 2011 – Photo by Esporão | All Rights Reserved

Esporão Private Selection 2011 is on a higher level, also in terms of longevity. This wine aged longer in wood, which was 70% American oak. It has bold tannins and elegance, depth of mouth, a pleasant ratio of freshness and heat, and a lasting finish.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão-Verdelho-2014 esporão Esporão's history and its wines Blend All About Wine Espor  o Verdelho 2014

Esporão Verdelho 2014 – Photo by Esporão | All Rights Reserved

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão-Duas-Castas esporão Esporão's history and its wines Blend All About Wine Espor  o Duas Castas

Esporão Duas Castas – Photo by Esporão | All Rights Reserved

Esporão Verdelho 2014 brings freshness and a bite. I’m sure it will bond very well with the lighter foods. If the previous wine expresses its variety, the Esporão Duas Castas exposes more than varieties; it illustrates the places where the Arinto (60%) and Gouveio (40%) cultivars are rooted. Once again, it contains that freshness and really grabs the oenophile.

Contacts
Herdade do Esporão
Apartado 31, 7200-999
Reguengos de Monsaraz
Tel: (+351) 266 509280
Fax: (+351) 266 519753
E-mail: reservas@esporao.com
Website: esporao.com

Esporão's history and its wines

Text João Barbosa | Translation Jani Dunne

Reguengos de Monsaraz is a town 170 kilometres away from the ocean coastline. For centuries, even millennia, fog in that area of Alentejo would be an extremely rare phenomenon. Building the Alqueva dam in the Guadiana river led to creating the biggest artificial lake in Europe – despite some people disagreeing – and made the fog more common.

I won’t even begin – not even briefly – to list the advantages and disadvantages of building the dam in Economic, Environmental and Social terms. However, I will mention that the water has proven useful for watering the vines, which multiplied all over Alentejo. The property development was discussed for the first time in the mid-60s, and the business project for Herdade do Esporão was “launched” in 1973 – so to speak, because it was postponed for years for reasons other than the businessmen’s will.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão_JB esporão Esporão's history and its wines Blend All About Wine Espor  o JB

Esporão – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

Esporão started as Joaquim Bandeira’s “fantasy”, whose insight was quite progressive; he wanted to plant a great vineyard in Alentejo. He challenged José Roquette, who left banking behind to embrace the new company.

The dictatorship fell in 1974, and in 1975, the Government reinforced the plan to build the dam even though they had decades to go before it was to be erected. Also in that year, Herdade do Esporão was occupied as part of the Agricultural Reform. In 1978, the property was returned, albeit under the obligation of selling the grapes to the local cooperative.

ADN containing not only wine

Before I go into wine poetry, I would like to mention something I consider highly relevant in the business world, which is social responsibility, in a broad sense. Be it in direct support of the arts or human heritage, to culture and the environment, it’s written in the DNA of Herdade do Esporão that the place wants to be more than a winery.

The first vintage, which would turn into the first own-brand wine took place in 1985; it would later be released in 1987. The first child was Reserva Tinto and, from the first edition, the labels have always included a work of art. The consecrated John Hogan was chosen for the premiere, but, unfortunately for the company, the painting is not included in the collection.

For the sake of culture, I must mention the preservation of the Tower of Esporão, a small medieval fort, and with that the preservation of an archaeological discovery in Herdade dos Perdigões (the land was bought in 1995, and the discovery was made in 1996). The discovered place dates back to some time between the third and fourth millennia before Christ. Countless businessmen would have supported, both actively and financially, what was considered an undesirable setback.

In 2006, João Roquette took over the manager role, having started a restructuring and replantation of the vineyards, and having adopted an environmental policy with the aim of recovering and recreating habitats, putting Nature to work, and using less treatments with pesticides.

Another act of the mission to put things in order is the new cellar, which was recently completed, and built out of rammed earth – an abandoned and almost forgotten method. In the old days, many cellars in Alentejo were built that way, and for a reason: coolness. The earth, gravel and wood enable continued airing and regular temperature… i.e. saving energy.

The main actors

Wine isn’t the company’s excuse. Concerns are the answer to the impact caused by agricultural or industrial activity. This brings up two reds – wearing Alberto Carneiro’s work – and two whites.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão-Reserva-red-2011 esporão Esporão's history and its wines Blend All About Wine Espor  o Reserva red 2011

Esporão Reserva Red 2012 – Photo by Esporão | All Rights Reserved

Esporão Reserva Red 2012 is a cannon ball, with its 14.5% alcohol. Come to think of it, that makes it sound heavy. Wrong! It’s a refreshing wine. In fact, the company’s experience and the success of this reference keep it up there on that level of reliability and prestige. It was made with Alicante Bouschet, Aragonês, Cabernet Sauvignon, Trincadeiras and other grapes. The fruit and wood are balanced, and it shows promise of living for a good number of years.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão-Private-Selection-red-2011 esporão Esporão's history and its wines Blend All About Wine Espor  o Private Selection red 2011

Esporão Private Selection red 2011 – Photo by Esporão | All Rights Reserved

Esporão Private Selection 2011 is on a higher level, also in terms of longevity. This wine aged longer in wood, which was 70% American oak. It has bold tannins and elegance, depth of mouth, a pleasant ratio of freshness and heat, and a lasting finish.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão-Verdelho-2014 esporão Esporão's history and its wines Blend All About Wine Espor  o Verdelho 2014

Esporão Verdelho 2014 – Photo by Esporão | All Rights Reserved

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporão-Duas-Castas esporão Esporão's history and its wines Blend All About Wine Espor  o Duas Castas

Esporão Duas Castas – Photo by Esporão | All Rights Reserved

Esporão Verdelho 2014 brings freshness and a bite. I’m sure it will bond very well with the lighter foods. If the previous wine expresses its variety, the Esporão Duas Castas exposes more than varieties; it illustrates the places where the Arinto (60%) and Gouveio (40%) cultivars are rooted. Once again, it contains that freshness and really grabs the oenophile.

Contacts
Herdade do Esporão
Apartado 31, 7200-999
Reguengos de Monsaraz
Tel: (+351) 266 509280
Fax: (+351) 266 519753
E-mail: reservas@esporao.com
Website: esporao.com

Esporão, an Alentejo Classic

Text José Silva | Translation Jani Dunne

One of Alentejo’s greatest properties, with 4450 acres of land, 1100 of which have active vineyards and the other 200 acres have olive trees producing excellent olive oil.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-Restaurant Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao Restaurant

The Restaurant – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-Wine-Shop Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao Wine Shop

Wine Shop – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

If we add a very well designed countryside cellar, a restaurant making excellent food, a wine shop selling various items and a pool of water that helps mould the landscape and waters the entire complex, we will get one of the few wine tourism locations in Alentejo. One day is not enough to enjoy it properly.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-Vineyards Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao Vineyards

Vineyards – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

Out of all of the above, the most attractive feature is the production of the wine– besides the breath-taking landscape of unusually endless vineyards, the quality and care they put into everything they do, and, of course, the wines of many levels, where quality is the standard and almost an obsession. This team is led by an oenologist who, although born far away in Australia, has become very Portuguese and was recently naturalised as a Portuguese citizen. David Baverstock can’t hide his passion for the work he does so well; besides, he is very well supported by the viticulture and oenology team in the hands of Luís Patrão. The results come in with every new harvest.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-Corropio Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao Corropio

Grape Variety Corropio – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-Molinha-Macia Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao Molinha Macia

Grape Variety Molinha Macia – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

In viticulture, the ampelographic area they keep is obviously of great importance, including 188 Portuguese species as well as many others from all over the world, where much of what belongs to Portugal is preserved, and its evolution and potential are analysed. Species with odd names, such as Tinta Pomar, Molinha Macia (soft and tender), Malvasia Cândida (Candid Malvasia), Corropio (Rush), Uva Salsa (Parsley Grape), Tinta do Bragão, Arinto do Interior, Larião, Amor-não-me-deixes (Don’t-leave-me-love), Carrasquenho and many others are proving their worth. But the most traditionally Portuguese species (Alicante Bouschet, Aragonês, Touriga Nacional, Verdelho, Antão Vaz, Arinto, Roupeiro, Gouveio) and some foreign (Syrah, Petit Verdot, Semillon) are where they get the base for most of their symbolic wines.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-Winery Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao Winery

Modern Winery – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-New-Technical-Features Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao New Technical Features

New Technical Features – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

Some of these grapes are then prepared in a modern cellar that was recently renovated, to include new technical features.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-Casks Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao Casks

Casks – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

Then, they rest in that incredible gigantic cask cellar. On our recent visit, we tasted a few of those and confirmed their potential, once again.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-branco-Duas-Castas-2013 Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao branco Duas Castas 2013

Duas Castas white 2013 – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

The Duas Castas white 2013, made from Gouveio and Antão Vaz, proved to be very clean, with light vegetable aromas, very citrusy and delicate. In the mouth, it is very refreshing, intense and persistent, has fruity notes and some mineral – a youthful wine.

Private Selection white, also 2013, is a completely different wine. Modern and seductive, fermented in wood, which is apparent straight away in the nose, somewhat exotic, very elegant, some white fruits, smoky notes and lightly toasted. In the mouth, it’s plump, full, of buttery notes, some very soft chocolate – a very harmonious wine.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-Reserva-2013 Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao Reserva 2013

Reserva 2013 – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

Still within the whites, we move on to Reserva 2013, a classic wine, also fermented in wood and very clean, with a little fruity intensity – somewhere between citrus and white fruits – and light smoky notes. In the mouth, it’s full, ample, including very ripe white fruit, balanced acidity and some freshness combined with persistent minerality.

Private Selection red 2011 reveals all the potential of an extraordinary year. Complex spicy aromas, some red fruits, very soft notes of chocolate and tobacco.: in the mouth, it’s austere, full, with notes of cocoa and coffee, intense, good acidity and a long, flavourful aftertaste.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-branco-Quatro-Castas-2013 Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao branco Quatro Castas 2013

Quatro Castas red 2013 – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

We move on to Quatro Castas red 2013, the nose is somewhat floral, perhaps red fruits and very fun notes of spices. In the mouth, it’s ample, with excellent acidity, some complexity, very elegant with a very interesting medium aftertaste.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-Reserva-red-2012 Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao Reserva red 2012

Reserva red 2012 – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

We finish with a classic, Red Reserva 2012. This wine has an exuberant nose and includes some wild fruits, a little smoke; it is spicy and elegant. The mouth is simultaneously elegant and austere, full-bodied, slightly toasted, with dark fruits, good acidity for balance and probably good longevity. A beautiful wine.

On our way out of the estate, we had to stop at Esporão Tower, a commission by D. Álvaro Mendes de Vasconcelos built between 1457 and 1490. It was recovered in 2003 and, today, houses a museum of archaeology, where valuable items collected in Esporão and in Perdigões are displayed.

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-Arch Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao Arch

Esporão Arch – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

Blend-All-About-Wine-Esporao-Chapel-of-Nossa-Senhora-dos-Remédios Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Esporão, an Alentejo Classic Blend All About Wine Esporao Chapel of Nossa Senhora dos Rem  dios

Chapel of Nossa Senhora dos Remédios – Photo by José Silva | All Rights Reserved

Beside the tower is the Esporão Arch and a Chapel of Nossa Senhora dos Remédios, which also belong to the history of this property, whose origin is lost in time…

Contacts
Herdade do Esporão
Apartado 31
7200-999
Reguengos de Monsaraz
Tel: (+351) 266 509280
Fax: (+351) 266 519753
E-mail:reservations@esporao.com
Website: esporao.com