Text João Pedro de Carvalho | Translation Bruno Ferreira
Quinta dos Plátanos is part of the Extremedura’s Viticultural Region, with Alenquer Designation of Origin. It’s one of the oldest Quintas in Alenquer municipality and is located in the Aldeia Galega de Merceana.
Its main activity over the years, and since the seventeenth century, has been the wine industry. The Quinta has always been maintained within the same family and would undergo a renewal in the twentieth century, initially by the hands of Artur de Menezes Corrêa de Sá, and later by his eldest son, José de Menezes Corrêa de Sá. And thus come the first wireframed vines and with compasses that allow the mechanization of works, first with animal-drawn implements and then mechanical, and later using air assets in the treatments being this way considered as a pioneer in some practices. In the 50’s it underwent a full cellar renovation that allowed the launch of wines with Plátano brand in the 60’s. Only later with the creation of the demarcated region were the wines rebranded to Quinta dos Plátanos. In the last years the vineyards have been being restructured, with 16 hectares including Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinta Roriz, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon. In total there are 35 hectares of vines with white grape varieties such as Arinto and Fernão Pires and red grape varieties such as the Pinot Noir, Castelão and Alicante Bouschet, in addition to the above.
Nowadays it’s Arthur Corrêa de Sá and his daughter Luísa who manage the Quinta dos Plátanos. The oenology is in charge of Jorge Páscoa, although when tasting the wines there’s clear distinction between the ranges, there’s a line that separates the range Quinta dos Plátanos from the Plátanos. This distinction is due to Luísa’s husband, the producer Joaquim Arnaud. While the first wines show the more classical side and say, the more rustic side of the region, the Plátanos wines show up in the most elegant side as is the hallmark of the Arundel lineage (Pavia). A place that oozes history, full of fantastic places, which in my opinion is still waiting for a wine that matches its full potential, and I might add that from what I tasted seems to be on the right track but still with some distance to go.
Both Quinta dos Plátanos are DOC Alenquer, the 2014 red and the white, also from 2014. The red shows up with breed, lots of ripe black fruit, freshness well present with a somewhat vegetal brake that provides it toughness and hardiness. In the mouth it shows fruit, fleshy fruit in medium body, it’s tasty and has a good freshness. The white gets its charms from the Arinto and Fernão Pires grape varieties, with great freshness, aromas with some sharpness, very citrus and some orchard fruit, flowers and lemon candy at the end. Mouth to match, fresh, inviting and appealing to the table in hot weather. In the Plátanos range two wines were tasted, the Plátanos Arinto 2014, with grape variety well present in the lemon leaf aromas, lime and lemon, great freshness, tense and with a slight floral somewhat shy in the background, a good example of the variety although it lacks greater angularity on the mouth tasting. The Plátano Tou Noir 2010 is a blend of Touriga Nacional and Pinot Noir, shows up fresh and very appealing, with a beautiful ability to go changing in the glass and adjusting over time. It becomes sweet tooth, fresh and terribly gastronomic with those veal chunks in coal accompanied with garlic butter. A lot of ripe and juicy forest fruit, fleshy and tasty, full of spices, a lot of guts while sweet tooth runs through the palate, all of it packed by a nice freshness that at no time lets it wilt.