For decades now Portuguese wines have been under-appreciated while offering some of the greatest value-for-money buys in the world. I suspect that Portuguese table wines suffer because of the legendary status of their sweeter cousins: Port, Madeira and Moscatel de Setubal, all first rate wines typically consumed after dinner.
Portugal produces wine from some 250 grape varieties so if you are a wine enthusiast, novice or professional, there is a world to explore from this beautiful country. Luckily the LCBO (and our neighbours across the river, the SAQ) stock some very good examples both on the regular list as well as the Vintages releases.
As we head into the Christmas season and with looming supply chain issues leading to possible shortages, I thought it prudent to highlight three wines now available at the LCBO and worthy of your dollar.
There’s a gorgeous pink salmon colour on this wine so by all means serve it with a gravlax at your Christmas get together. By the way—and of course—matching the colour of wine with the colour of food is NOT a rule. It just happens to work here.
Vinho Verde is Portugal’s northern wine region and translates as: Green Wine. Here wines are made to be enjoyed, young, fresh and at a modest level of alcohol. The grape in this wine is the thick skinned variety Espedeiro, common in Vinho Verde.
This rosé’s flavours are appealing, recalling wild strawberry and raspberry finishing with red currant, young tobacco leaf and cooked rhubarb. As with so many Vinho Verdes it has a light refreshing spritz making it an easy quaffer. It’s equally at home with sushi as well as moderately spiced Thai pork dishes. A very good buy.
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