Featured Wines for January

Our trip to Portugal several years ago raised my impression of the wine industry in that country. One of the issues at that time was finding Portuguese wines to introduce at Bishop’s Stock. There were a few importers who had connected with wine makers, but it was not until 2010 when Obrigado Vinhos Portugal, a New York based importer, was founded with the sole mission to import just one wine: Vera Vinho Verde, but because of the growing demand for Portuguese wines in the US, today Obrigado now represents many Portuguese wine families.¬†All the wines imported by Obrigado have three things in common: quality, authenticity and value. Obrigado, which means “thank you” in Portuguese, aims to continue building a quality collection of wines that honors the places, grapes and people of the country.

Nortico Alvarhino, Minho, Portugal $14

Nortico Alvarinho is from tiny vineyard plots in Moncao and Melgao along the Minho River, on the northern border with Spain’s Galicia province. This is the best Alvarinho growing area in Portugal. Creamy citrus oil, lime and yellow apple notes are nicely spiced and detailed with saline mineral and floral underpinnings through the long finish. Nortico is light and delicate, a “porch-sipping wine” to drink on its own or a terrific seafood wine, particularly with salty oystersi Alcohol: 12.5%

Aplanta Red Blend, Alentejano, Portugal $10

Aplanta Red Blend comes from Alentejo, an arid growing area in the south of Portugal, The fruit for Aplanta comes from a community vineyard and is made from 70% Aragonez, 30% Alicante Bouschet. The color is dark garnet. On the nose you get lush blueberry, plum and red cherry aromas, overlaid with slate mineral. On the palate, red cherry and blueberry fruit have hints of fresh tobacco, black pepper and spice. Aplanta goes well with grilled meat from burgers to steaks, as well as charcuterie and sharp cheeses. Alcohol: 14%