Fitapreta A Laranja Mecânica
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Fitapreta is António Maçanita’s estate near the ancient Roman city of Evora, located in the rolling hills of Alentejo. Since its inception in 2004, Fitapreta has pushed the boundaries of what fine winemaking can be in this region, and over the last two decades, the estate has become a benchmark for the New Portugal, earning Antonio international accolades like Winemaker of the Year, Most Unique Winemaker, and Winemaker of the Generation.
Maçanita works only with indigenous varieties and showcases his estate’s terroir through exacting work: farming organically without irrigation, harvesting by hand at night, deliberate bunch sorting in the winery, and native yeast fermentation. Through his commitment to these principles, he can craft wines that represent sunny Alentejo, but which have a balance and freshness unmatched by others in the region.
Maçanita finds equilibrium between tradition and modernity, and his constant exploration of vineyards has enabled him to show off a truly deep understanding of Alentejano terroir, present and past. Whether on his original estate vineyard or in his Chão dos Eremitas site, his wines always contain a through-line of elegance and purity. The broad assortment of wine styles available from Fitapreta is a testament to Antonio’s intellect, curiosity, playfulness, and rigorous attention to detail. Fitapreta has something for everyone!
A Laranja Mecânica means “a mechanical orange,” and is a playful reference to Antonio’s winemaking process, which differs from the traditional method for making orange wine because he introduces a press—the “machine.”
WHAT MAKES THIS WINE UNIQUE?
This is an orange wine made with a distinctly Maçanita twist: instead of relying on passive skin contact, António partially presses the grapes, allowing the remaining 10-15% of juice to rest inside the skins for one week. The wine is made exclusively from the second pressing of these grapes—and still maintains vinous elegance despite this rustic and atypical technique.
2020 90 WE, 90WA; 2018 90WS
A field blend of Arinto, Roupeiro, Verdelho, Antão Vaz, Alicante Branco, Trincadeira-das-Pratas, and Fernão Pires from sustainably farmed vines ranging from 25 to 50 years in age.
This wine makes an excellent pairing with cheese, foie gras, or any terrine. In a tasting, it creates a very interesting transition to red wines, due to its intensity, tannin, and concentration. Ultimately it is a wine that, like its making, is playful and exploratory.
VINIFICATION AND AGING:
The grapes are gently pressed and left to macerate for a week with a small amount (10-15%) of remaining juice still inside the grapes. After one week, these grapes are pressed again, and the wine is made only with the concentrated juice from the second pressing, which ferments spontaneously in stainless steel, and goes through malolactic fermentation. No sulfur is added until the end of fermentation. The wine is stabilized with bentonite and bottled unfiltered. This is a vegan wine.
LOCATION, SOIL, CLIMATE:
Alentejo is a large region in southeastern central Portugal, which is one of the agricultural centers of the country. The climate is Atlantic-Mediterranean, with significant temperature differences between day and night. This temperature range produces fruit with a natural combination of ripeness and freshness. Alentejo sees 3,000 hours of annual sunshine, making it Portugal’s sunniest region, and only 600mm of annual rainfall—less than 15% of which falls during the growing season. These vineyards are planted in rocky schist at 300-400m elevation above sea level.
Honey orange in color with a very exuberant nose, showing notes of candied orange and quince. The wine has a lot of texture on the palate but finishes with great freshness.