Bottoms Up

Beer and wine in the Bay Area and beyond

Wine Blog Wednesday #38: Portuguese table wines

By Jessica Yadegaran
Wednesday, October 10th, 2007 at 2:04 pm in Uncategorized.

Today, I’m participating in a group blog. One Wednesday a month, wine bloggers around the globe pick a subject, grape or type of wine, and share their thoughts. Bloggers from Dr. Vino to Vinography participate, and today I’m joining in.

Catavino, the online source for Iberian wine 411, is the host. So it’s fitting that the theme is Portuguese table wines. Thankfully, we were asked to step away from Ports, and the Douro (the most well-known region, thanks again to those Ports). I’m a huge fan of Portuguese table wines, especially those from the Alentejo region in southern Portugal.

They are affordable, highly-drinkable and plummy, like Zinfandel without all the heat – and hype.

I’m going to chat about a wine I’ve blogged about before because I love it so much and opened up a second bottle recently. It’s Esquila Wines’ 2003 Dignitas Reserva, a single vintage blend of Aragonez (50 percent), Trincadeira (30 percent) and Alicante Bouschet (20 percent).

Here’s what I said back in April:
“Wow. This is the same blend as Esquila’s Nomisma 2002 minus the Cab. I think it lets the rich Mediterranean soil and soul of the indigenous Portuguese varietals really stand out, and showcase what the Alentejo is really capable of: Deep red color and dark plummy fruit. Plus, it has less alcohol (14 percent) than the Nomisma and rich tobacco, coffee and oak. What a beautiful wine.”

Now, after opening up a second bottle this past weekend, let me continue to go off because it’s even better now! The body is silky, the nose is wider and more complex, with smoke galore. Even the fruit seems dense — in a good, non-jammy way. The French oak is really coming through, too. I whipped up a quick, all-sausage paella and took this baby to town.

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  • Mariëlla

    Good to see a second Dignitas tasted for WBW#38. And thanks for the info on the grape mix, I did not do that kind of research this time.