Wine from Dão – an Alvaro Castro Tasting

Last week I dropped into the Spanish Acquisition HQ for a bit of Jamon and ended up tasting a whole heap of stuff including a selection of wines from Alvaro Castro from the Dão region in Portugal. This lot are not currently being imported, but I’m sure it won’t be long before we’ll be seeing a few of these around town. The wines were served up single blind (we knew they were Alvaro Castro’s wines, but not which ones). I don’t have a lot of info on these wines or the region, but Jamie Goodie has a good overview of the region, including a bit on Alvaro Castro and his vineyards. Overall, I’d summarise the wines as very elegant and balanced, at the same time there is plenty of fruit too.

Primus 2006 – The only white in the line up from Alvaro today. Apples and pears, saturated by banana. Pleasant enough with a long finish, but too much banana for me. 87 Pts.

Dão Reserva 2005 – An enticing nose with subtle spice with some dark fruits and violets. A brooding kind of wine, deep and intense with fine balance and plenty of quality fruit. 91 Pts.

Dão Reserva 2005 – Something odd with this bottle, no notes.

Quinta du Pelleda Vinha da Serra 2006 – Cherry and blackberry, Christmas cake spices, vanilla oak and a bit of game. Tight and structured in the mouth, but very enjoyable. A healthy dose of tannins too. 90 Pts.

Pelada 2003 – Here we go, showing a bit of age but its still quite intense. Blackberry, beetroot and blueberry with woody spice and some great acid that really livens up this wine. 92 Pts.

Carrocel 2006 – This seemed like a younger version of the Pelada with a bit of mint and more obvious oak. Juicy and mouth coating, but I’m sure it will all integrate in a couple of years. 92 Pts.