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Certified Sommelier - Portugal
Terms in this set (68)
Arresting the fermentation of wine with brandy while sugar was still present
Nickname the English gave to Port
Heat aging meant to emulate a long sea voyage in which Madeira would be subject to wide temperature fluctuations
Appellation system in Portugal
Denominação de Origem Controlada (DOC). In late 2009, DOCs were additionally classified as Denominação de Origem Protegida (DOP) in order to maintain EU protection
Portuguese wine quality levels
Original wine quality levels:
Vinho de Mesa
Indicação de Proveniencia Regulamentada (IPRs)
Denominação de Origem Controlada (or DOCs)
New EU Sanctioned quality levels
Denominação de Origem Protegida (DOP). This includes former DOCs, and former IPRs. Regulates style, maximum yields, minimum alcohol and aging requirements.
Indicação Geogràfica Protegida (IGP or IG). This includes the former VRs. 85% of grapes must be grown in state region.
Wine law for DOP
Individual legislation for each DOP wine prescribes allowed styles, maximum yields, minimum alcohol content, and aging requirements, if applicable.
If produced as vintage-dated DOP or IGP, Portuguese table wines may be labeled as Garrafeira ("private wine cellar"), indicating a minimum period of aging prior to release.
Tinto (red) Garrafeira wines must age for a minimum 30 months, including at least 12 months in bottle.
Branco (white) and rosado Garrafeira wines must age for a minimum 12 months, with at least 6 in bottle.
Garrafeira Port style
The vintage Garrafeira Port style as pioneered by Niepoort has a separate connotation: following a few years' aging in barrels, the Port is matured for a period of at least eight years in glass demijohns. Still Portuguese table wines of designated origin may also be labeled reserva, indicating an alcohol content of at least 0.5% higher than the legal minimum established by the respective DOP or IGP; however, stricter requirements in individual DOPs may supersede this standard.
Sparkling wine labeling
For traditional method sparkling wines, reserva indicates a minimum period of 12 months on the lees prior to dégorgement. Colheita Seleccionada indicates a minimum 1% higher alcohol content than that established by the regional appellation.
Terras do Dão
Terras de Cister
Terras da Beira
Península de Setubal
Porto & Douro
Portugal white grape varieties
Castelão (most planted red "casta" (grape varietal))
Vinho Verde: Trajadura, Loureiro, Alvarinho
Bairrada/DoTejo/Bucelas/Alantejo: Fernão Pires (Maria Gomes), Arinto
Portugal red grape varieties
Douro and Dão: Touriga Nacional, Tinto Roiz (Tempranillo)
Douro and DoTejo: Aragonez
Alentejo and Southern Portugal: Trincadeira
Southern Portugal: Castelão
Minho and Vinho Verde
In the Northwest corner of the country. Minho IGP and Vinho Verde DOP share the exact geographical boundaries.
Vinho Verde, "green wine", a reference to the wines' youthful freshness and the verdant countryside, is the largest DOP in Portugal and represents 15% of the nation's total vineyard acreage, producing red, white, and rosado wines from an assortment of grapes.
Vinho Verde white grape varieties
Loureiro is the region's most heavily planted white grape and the primary component of traditional Vinho Verde blends. Other white grapes include Trajadura (Treixadura), Avesso, Pedernã (Arinto), and the Spanish Albariño (known as Alvarinho in Portugal)
Vinho Verde red grape varieties
Red and rosato wines, produced from grapes like Vinhão (a teinturier grape), Espadeiro, Borraçal, and Alvarelhão, represent a minority of exports.
Vinho Verde wine
The light, floral white wines of the region are more common in both Europe and the US and are marked by lively acidity and low alcohol levels, and are slightly sparkling—a result, generally, of carbon dioxide injection prior to bottling. The red wines, also pétillant, gain their sparkle from malolactic fermentation in the bottle, a process usually avoided for white wines. The wines, whether white or red, are at their best in the year after release.
Vinho Verde subregions
From north to south:
Monção e Melgaço
Within this IGP is the Trás-os-Montes DOP.
This dry, hot, mountainous region produces wines that are typically ripe and full-bodied. The higher altitude vineyards are cooler and can preserve acidity.
Trás-os-Montes DOP subregions
Transmontano red grapes
Transmontano white grapes
Includes the DOPs Douro and Porto
Portugal's first demarcated wine region--one of the first appellations recognized in Europe--and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Duoro River carves deep valleys. Vineyards run from the riverside up the terraced slopes
Fortified Port from Douro is released as Porto DOP. Approximately 50% of the region's wine is released as Porto
Schist is the preferred soil for Port.
Continental. Severely hot summers and cold winters
Douro/Porto DOP subzones
Douro red grapes
Approved grapes is a long list. The best red wines are usually produced from:
Douro white grapes
Douro Reserva and Grande Reserva wines
Reserva wines must achieve a minimum alcohol of:
11.5% for white or rosada wines
12% for red wines
Standard for Douro is 10.5% (white/rosado) or 11% (red).
White reserva wines must be aged for six months; red reserva wines must be aged for one year. The IVDP must certify all Douro wines; those that meet reserva criteria and score exceptionally well in blind tasting analysis may use the term grande reserva
Douro sparkling and late harvest wines
Espumanto do Douro (sparkling wines) and Colheita Tardia (late harvest wines) may be produced as Douro DOP
Douro's first exceptional dry, table wine
A large IGP that was split up in 2011 into four new IGPs
Terras do Dão
Terras de Cister
Terras da Beira
Terras do Dão IGP
Contains Dão DOP and Lafões DOP
Some of Portugal's best dry reds. Touriga Nacional is a signature component of Dão blends
Three mountain ranges protect the vineyards from harsh winds. The region is hot and dry. Acidity is preserved in vineyards located between 400 and 500 meters above sea level. Terraced vineyards on granite slopes
Dão DOP subregions
Serra da Estrela (named for Portugal's highest mountain range)
Terras de Azurara
Terras de Senhorim
Dão DOP red grapes
Dão DOP white grapes
Dão DOP wine classifications
Tinto/Branco Nobre Reserva
Tinto/Branco Nobre Garrafeira
Beira Atlântico IGP
Contains Bairrada DOP
Predominately red wines, although white and Rosado wines are authorized
Bairrada red grapes
Main red grape is Baga. Minimum 50% Baga for red wines
Bairrada white grapes
Red: Clay based soils (barros) with chalk
White: Usually planted in sandier soils
Collectively, the region releases a larger volume of wine than any other in Portugal, but it has long carried a reputation of low quality.
Contains nine DOPs
Encostas de Aire
Bucelas, Colares, and Carcavelos DOPs
Nearest the capital. Slowly disappearing due to an expanding urban population
Dry white wines from a minimum 75% Arinto
May be white or red.
Ungrafted vines. Sandy soils provided a defense against phylloxera.
Ramisco make up a minimum 80% red
Malvasia make up a minimum 80% white
Península de Setúbal IGP
Formerly Terras do Sado, includes the DOP zones Setúbal and Palmela
Península de Setubal climate
Two distinct areas:
Low-lying, sandy plains spreading eastward from the hilltop town of the same name, and the clay-limestone lower slopes of the Arrabida Mountains. The sandy plains provide the best terroir for Castelão.
Palmela red wines
Castelão, the region's premier grape and dominant component of Palmela reds—a minimum 66.7% is stipulated
Palmela white wines
White wines are typically blended with a high proportion of Fernão Pires and Arinto. Rosado, espumante and licoroso wines are also authorized.
Known for vinhos licoroso. Sweet white and red fortified wines are produced, from a minimum 67% Moscatel de Setúbal (Muscat d'Alexandria) or Moscatel Roxo, respectively
Tejo and Alentejano IGPs
Both derive their names from the Tagus, or Tejo, River
Contains the single unrestrictive DoTejo DOP (formerly Ribatejo)
Red, white, and rosado wines are produced from a bewildering number of native and international varietals. Castelão and Fernão Pires are the dominant red and white grapes; white wines outnumber reds.
DoTejo DOP subregions
Alentejano's hot growing season manifests in the perennial problems of low acidity and high alcohol, and irrigation is absolutely necessary in the region's arid plains. The Alentejo DOP within Altentejano contains eight subzones
Red wine production exceeds that of whites. Trincadeira is the region's most prominent grape.
Plantations of Quercus suber—cork trees—are widespread through the region
Alentejo DOP subzones
Southernmost IGP on the Portuguese mainland.
Algarve's hot seaside climate is not particularly suited for the production of fine wines, and in any event resort tourism has displaced many of the region's vineyards. Contains four DOP zones
Algarve DOP zones
Algarve red grapes
Tinta Negra Mole
Algarve white grapes
The volcanic Açores (Azores) islands are located in the middle of the Atlantic, nearly 1,000 miles from the coast of Portugal. Three of the nine islands—Pico, Graciosa, and Terceira—have DOP zones, although conditions in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean are not tremendously conducive to viticulture. The fortified white wines of Pico DOP are the most highly regarded wines of the archipelago, yet they are generally consumed locally and viticulture occupies only a sliver of the island. Pico DOP wines must achieve a minimum 16% abv after fortification, and are aged for a minimum three years in barrel. Verdelho, Arinto and Terrantez are authorized for production. Biscoitos DOP, on the island of Terceira, also produces fortified white wines from the same grapes. Graciosa DOP produces unfortified, dry white table wines.
Terras Madeirenses IGP
The Terras Madeirenses IGP encompasses both of the inhabited isles of the subtropical Madeira archipelago: Madeira and Porto Santo. Two DOP zones, Madeira and Madeirense, cover the fortified and unfortified wines, respectively, of both islands. Madeira wine's regulatory body, the IVBAM, operates a cooperative winemaking facility for Madeirense DOP
May be red, white, or rosado.
Produced from grapes as dissimilar as Verdelho, Arnsburger (a Riesling crossing developed at Geisenheim), Cabernet Sauvignon, Tinta Negra, and Syrah, they are rarely exported
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