This summer has definitely been the summer of Portuguese wines for me. I was lucky enough to participate in a lovely tasting with Wines of Alentejo earlier this month. It was wonderful to get to know this hot region in Portugal & its wines better (like this bottle of Esporão Colheita branco, which I just loved).
Did you know that Portugal has around 250 native grape varieties? That’s a lot of grapes! Most of them are relatively unknown to the average consumer, despite the fact that the consumer may be drinking wines made with these varieties and just not know it. For example, did you know that the grape, Antão Vaz, is often used in white Port production? Arinto is used in Vinho Verde production and is known as Pedernã in that region.
Many of the wines in Portugal are blends, and therefore, the individual grapes are not always noted. However, they are each extremely important in maintaining flavor and structure in the wine. Like Arinto–this grape is often used to add acidity to a blend, sometimes with Antão Vaz. A perfect complement!
Arinto & Antão Vaz Grape Profiles on Winetraveler.com
It has been hard to write about travel during these strange pandemic times due to the fact that there is so much uncertainty on the topic. Therefore, I’ve been focusing on more educational type pieces for Winetraveler. This means more regional pieces like the articles on Alentejo and Israel, as well as more grape profile pieces–which, as I mentioned above, can be endless if you focus even just on Portugal!
Arinto and Antão Vaz are two peas in a pod. These grapes are often blended together, especially in Alentejo, and so it made sense to put them together here. There’s a good chance that white wine you are drinking from Alentejo has at least one or the other. Learn more about each through my articles on Winetraveler.com.