Casa Ferreirinha Papa Figos Douro Tinto 2019  £12.95

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This producer, founded in 1952, is named after the legendary Porto matriarch Dona Antónia Ferreira. Affectionately nicknamed 'Ferreirinha' by her countrymen, the house pays homage to her memory and was the first house in the region dedicated to making light wines. Purchased by Sogrape in 1987, it has 520 hectares of vineyard in the Douro in all of its three sub-regions: Lower Corgo, Upper Corgo and Douro Superior. The winemaking is headed up by Luís Sottomayor, who restrains the Douro’s natural exuberance to produce wines that have a freshness, like Esteva and Papa Figos, allied to a lovely depth and texture, as with Vinha Grande Tinto and Quinta da Leda.

'Papa figos' or 'fig muncher' is the nickname for the golden oriole, a migratory bird which passes through the Douro. The Tinta Roriz, Tinta Barroca, Touriga Franca and Touriga Nacional grapes for this blend are sourced from high altitude vineyards in the Douro Superior region, with around 25% coming from the Quinta da Leda estate in the far eastern reaches of the region, close to the border with Spain. Soils are predominantly schist, which fractures vertically and allows the vine roots to delve deep to access water and nutrients to sustain them through the growing season.

The 2019 vintage began with a cold, dry winter. With the exception of a rainy April, spring was drier than usual and temperatures were mild, providing good conditions for early growth, flowering and fruit set. The mild conditions continued into the summer, allowing the grapes to undergo a perfectly paced slow ripening, accumulating good intensity of flavour whilst retaining a crisp natural acidity. The grapes harvested were of excellent quality.

After gentle destemming and soft-crushing, the grapes were conveyed to stainless steel vats, where maceration of the skins and alcoholic fermentation took place. During this stage, the wine underwent gentle maceration at a controlled temperature. At the end of maceration, around 25% of the wine was aged in used French oak barrels with the remainder left in stainless steel tanks. The final blend is made eight months after harvest, and bottled after 12 months.

This wine is deep ruby red in colour with violet nuances. It has a very intense aroma, dominated by floral notes of basil and rock rose, light menthol tones and notes of red fruits and apricot. On the palate, it has good body, well-integrated acidity, smooth tannins and red fruit notes. Its finish is elegant and balanced.




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