Quinta da Pellada Pape
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“If God were to design a wine-growing region, what he would come up with would look a lot like the Dão.” – Álvaro Castro.
Since 1980, Álvaro Castro has been the winemaker for his family’s properties at Quinta da Pellada and Quinta de Saes. In that time, he established himself as the region’s pre-eminent winemaking mind, crafting elegant wines of place that showcase the explosive aromatics and cool-climate freshness that are intrinsic to this special terroir. As he does at Quinta de Saes, Álvaro uses traditional plantings (field blends) and minimal intervention in his winemaking at Pellada to achieve and express the true story of the piece of land he is farming. While he lives and works at Quinta de Saes, Quinta da Pellada, which dates to the 16th century, is home to the older plantings in his charge, with vine ages dating back to the early 20th century. Álvaro is a fierce traditionalist, and the “old-school” nature of his wines showcase the brilliance that comes from an honest expression of place and time without intervention or mitigation. His wines embody the idea that “wine is made in the vineyard,” and he is unapologetically critical of winemakers who mess with their raw product too much. He speaks most passionately about making wines that “reflect the soil.” He does not put much stock into winemaking as an exact science – wine is what it is, and it has been made that way because that is what the land and the fruit are telling him to do. The results are undeniable – these wines are unmistakably Dão and represent the apotheosis of this beautiful appellation.
WHAT MAKES THIS WINE UNIQUE?
This wine comes from some of the oldest vines, yielding profound concentration paired with ethereal elegance.
50% Touriga Naçional, 30% Baga 20% old-vine field blend (vinhas velhas) from 2 vineyards: Quinta da Pellada and Outeiro. Sustainably grown vines planted in 1950 in granite base with lines of clay and sand soil at 500m (1,640 ft) elevation.
VINIFICATION AND AGEING:
The grapes were carefully selected by hand. They were fermented in stainless steel tanks with 12 days of maceration. The ageing took place in 2nd/3rd use, 400L and 600L French oak barrels for 30 months.
LOCATION, SOIL, CLIMATE:
Grapes come from two vineyards: Quinta da Pellada and Outeiro. Soils are mostly granite with lines of clay and sand.
Intense ruby color. Very concentrated on the nose, with evident good quality wood. Elegant and vigorous style. On the mouth, notes of red fruit game with toasted final notes. Fine and good quality tannins, very well balanced. Great complexity.