Thursday 23rd September Summary – 21:20
I left my room at 0715 on the way to the winery with grey overcast skies and it was quite cool. I was worried that there might be some rain, and in fact there was a short shower around 16:40, but nothing to worry about. The 15 day forecast shows some cloudy unsettled weather tomorrow but good and clear after that. This of course bodes well for the Touriga Nacional and Touriga Franca still to come.
I met with Charles and Arlindo briefly after dinner and we reviewed the picking order. We have another day and a half of Roriz left, then it was decided we will switch to some blocks of old vines from Quinta do Tua. Charles wants to leave the Touriga Nacional and Touriga Franca from Malvedos until last and I could not agree more – a few more days of sun and warmth will ripen them to perfection.
The Nacional and Franca account for 28% and 35% of the Quinta plantings respectively, and if the weather holds good my feeling is that this is when some of the very best wines of the Vintage will be made.
We have now had five lagars (two of which have been fortified), three of Barroca; one of Barroca/Roriz. Although more often than not we ferment single varieties as they are picked we also carry out some mixed fermentations. The Barroca, which is an excellent all-round performer when picked at its peak complements the Tinta Roriz which produces intense wines with a powerful tannic profile suitable for long ageing. Lastly there is one lagar of straight Roriz being trodden tonight.
I just want to share some pictures with you of one of the Barroca lagars being run off – when I see the colour purple coming through in a fermenting lagar I know from experience we are onto something good!
Note: click on any photo to open in new window to view full size