A very unusual rosé
This bottle certainly stands out on the shelves at Apolónia alongside the multitude of rosé wines in their clear bottles giving away their varying shades of pink. Only the small lettering at the bottom of the label gives away the fact that this is a rosé, and it is quite different from anything else on the market.
Quinta do Cardo is an organic producer located high in the hills between the Serra da Estrela and the Douro, close to the Spanish border in a wine sub-region known as the Beira Interior.
The vineyards are at an altitude of nearly 800 metres and the quinta produces some very interesting wines.
Last year I wrote about their superb oaked white Vinha Lomedo, made from the Siria grape, and having now tried this rosé, I will be looking out for more wines from this producer.
The wine is almost clear in colour, only just a rosé and whilst it has spent some time in oak, this is not detectable on the nose or on the palate.
The wine is delicate on the nose with subtle floral and red fruit notes, great freshness and minerality in the mouth yet smooth and rounded.
This is not a wine to serve with spicy or richly-flavoured food but is ideal as an aperitif and well suited to lightly-flavoured fish dishes.
What makes this wine even more unusual is the grape – Caladoc is actually a hybrid grape made from crossing Malbec and Grenache. Price €14.95.
By Patrick Stuart