wine bottle

Wine: In love with the naked woman

I’m something of a diehard Dão fan and also love the wines from this producer, Quinta da Pellada, but this label depicting an abstract rendering of a naked woman has somehow flown under my radar – until now.

I was enjoying dinner last week at the 10th anniversary event of the Bon Bon restaurant in Carvoeiro and this wine (Pellada 2018) was served with one of the courses.

From the first sniff, I was besotted. This is not a cheap wine, costing around €30 in shops (it is available at Apolónia), but the quality more than justifies the price tag.

I next got to try it just a few days later at the annual wine trade tasting event of distributors Decante Vinhos, held at Vila Vita Parc last Sunday and Monday. I made a B-line for the Quinta da Pellada desk and had the chance to try most of their reds, including some of the even more costly vintages, but the Naked Woman stood out for me as the most impressive.

This is a medium-bodied wine of great finesse and elegance, and the most evident tasting note that comes to mind for me is “savoury”. A sommelier friend who seems to be equally besotted with the wine pinpointed this as mushrooms and I have to agree.

The name Naked Woman, or Mulher Nua in Portuguese as it is known, does not actually appear on the label. It is, in fact, named Pelada (spelled with just one ‘L’), meaning stripped naked in Portuguese, a clever play on the name of the estate where it is produced, Quinta da Pellada, spelled with two ‘Ls’.

The wine is produced using 80% field blend grapes from old vines made up of dozens of different varieties, blended with 20% Touriga Nacional and partially aged in used oak.

By Patrick Stuart

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