A tale of two vineyards

Cortes de Cima Branco 2015

The story of Cortes de Cima goes back to 1988 when the owners set out in a sailing boat to travel around Europe and find a location to create their own family vineyard. They found it in the heart of the Alentejo wine lands, not far from Vidigueira and proceeded to build a reputation for producing some of the region’s most interesting red wines, mixing old world terroir with new world techniques.

Some years later, they invested in another vineyard, this time on the Alentejo coast near Vila Nova de Milfontes, with the objective of producing lighter and fresher white wines, away from the baking summer heat of the Alentejo plains.

Here they produce Sauvignon Blanc and Alvarinho varietals and since 2012 have been making this Cortes de Cima white, a blend of the two grapes, along with Viognier grown on the inland estate.

The blend contains 50% Alvarinho, giving backbone and acidity, with 30% Viognier, adding body, and 20% Sauvignon Blanc.

This is very much a gastronomic wine, fermented and aged on the fine lees; 40% in French oak and the balance in stainless steel. There is a hint of oak on the nose lending soft vanilla notes and marrying with layers of green and white fruit aromas. In the mouth, the wine is fresh, vibrant and well rounded. This is a wine that will definitely improve with age over a few more years in the bottle. €11.95 at Apolónia.

By PATRICK STUART [email protected]