Whites from Quinta do Rol
I was recently browsing the shelves of one of the larger Garrafeira Soares shops and found a decent selection of the whites from Quinta do Rol, one of my favourite producers from the Lisbon region.
Until now, I have only ever featured their outstanding Pinot Noir red 2009 (still available at Apolónia) and their rosés, both the oaked “Barrica” version and the standard rosé, also both excellent. But I had never seen a range of their whites on sale anywhere so decided to buy the whole lot and give them a try. There were four varietals: an Alvarinho, a Pinot Grigio, a Sauvignon Blanc and an oaked Pinot Grigio “Barrica” along with the Branco Seleção blend.
All were good but I did not find the Alvarinho comparable in terms of quality to others in the same price range from up north, and the Sauvignon Blanc was also nothing special.
As far as the varietals are concerned, it was the two Pinot Grigios that stood out, especially the “Barrica”. This oaked white is another example of the careful and expert oak work from this producer. Like the Pinot Noir oaked rosé, it is fermented and aged in used oak barrels, resulting in a wine that is not obviously oaked but has great depth of flavour coupled with lovely freshness and acidity.
Also impressive is the unoaked Branco Seleção, a blend of Alvarinho and Arinto which is, in fact, the cheapest of them all, costing just €6.95 at Garrafeira Soares.
The other varietals are all priced at around €9 whilst the premium Pinot Grigio Barrica costs €21.95.
It is worth noting that Garrafeira Soares has an online shop with a home delivery service: