Looking for an aged-worthy red that is ready to drink now? This is for you.
Crafted from 100% Ramisco, the signature variety of Portugal’s Colares, this 1997 is performing like a crazy mash-up of perfectly-aged Burgundy, Bordeaux, and Barolo. And, given its location on the coast of the Atlantic (literally we’re talking in the sand!), add in a does of coastal wildness that acts like the cherry on top. At this price, and 4.3 Vivino Stars, you need to buy at least half a case.
In 1999, the Fundação Oriente, a cultural foundation based in Lisbon, purchased a 22-acre property once owned by Manuel José Colares, with the goal of keeping the Colares appellation alive. Once an acclaimed district for long-lived reds based on ramisco grown in the sands along the coast west of Sintra, this farthest western point on the European continent is now valued for its beachfront homes. Tucked amidst the houses, a few parcels of vines still survive. The foundation is now offering older bottles from the winery’s cellars, including this 1997, a tawny-colored red that needs a swirl in the glass to coax the tannins into the background. Their fennel-seed character slowly gives way to scents of nori, red cranberry and licorice, the wine taking on an autumnal intensity, ghosting its red flavors into the finish. Savor this on its own, or pour it with herb-roasted goat.
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