Top shelf whites 4 – BAIRRADA

Nossa Branco

By Patrick Stuart [email protected]

Carrying on my route south looking at Portugal’s very best white wines, this week’s region is Bairrada, where the Pato family are something of a legacy in the business. In fact, I could not pen this column without mentioning Luís Pato’s excellent Vinhas Velhas Branco, an un-oaked wine of considerable body and complexity costing less than half the price of this week’s selected wine. But this series of articles is about the top white wines made in Portugal and it is Luís Pato’s daughter Filipa, along with her husband, who created this wine together – hence the name “Nossa”.

Filipa is one of Portugal’s most adventurous wine makers, well known for her ‘ensaios’ range of wine, which are basically unusual experiments with different grapes, and for her excellent and great value for money sparkling wines. This is their premium white wine offering and was recognised as one of “Portugal’s 50 Great Wines” in an important tasting event that took place in New York last year. The wine is produced exclusively from the traditional Bairrada white variety Bical, from vines at least 25 years old. Barrel-fermented with twice monthly batonnage until February, this is a rich and complex white with well integrated oak. On the nose there are unusual notes of toasted nuts and fresh fruits, following through with great freshness in the mouth. As fans of Filipa Pato’s wine have come to expect, this is a wine that shows originality as well as quality.

Promotional price at Apolónia supermarket

(valid from Thursday September 5 to Wednesday September 11)

NOSSA CALCÁRIOBRANCO: €19.95 (retail price €22.95)