Fabulous seminar on wines of Alentejo today led by the charming and always interesting Evan Goldstein MS.
Wines of Alentejo have been fabulous since Roman times, and in the last ten years are just getting better and better.
The seminar kicked off with a bit of a geography lesson about the various quality regions of Alentejo, and some of the new developments.
Among the most interesting development is this: more producers are using Amphora to age their wines. Not because it’s “cool” and “trendy” for producers to do this nowdays all around the world, but because using Amphora was actually the way producers aged wines in the ancient Roman times. One thing I was not aware of though: it is quite expensive to repair Amphora, so care is demanded!
Four white wines were tasted in the first flight, that also included eight red wines. As is typical in Alentejo, the wines were blends. I found the white wines particularly refreshing with lots of minerality and bright acidity. The reds were fuller bodied and spicy, great food wines.
The second flight was 12 wines based on Alicante Bouchet produced in different regions.
Following the tastings (held at the Highline hotel) was a formal lunch that paired various wines with food, with a talk by the producer of Wine & Spirits magazine Joshua Greene, a big supporter of wines from Portugal.