Wine Talk: A powerful red from Beira Interior

I’ve written a few articles about the wines of Rui Roboredo Madeira whose Beyra label, made on a remote north-eastern corner of the country, I usually associate with great-value-for-money wines in the mid-level price range.

A good example is the white “Quartz” that retails at around €11 and punches well above its weight.

This was my first try of one of their premium labels, a wine normally sold at €31.95 at Apolónia, but that I picked up during the recent wine fair for 20% less.

This is an interesting rendition of one of my favourite red grapes, Tinta Roriz, which is known as Aragonês in the south of the country and Tempranillo in Spain. Wines made from this grape as a monovarietal tend to be on the lighter side of full-bodied, but this is clearly a wine of great extraction.

The vineyards at this estate are at an average altitude of some 700 metres, where cool nights confer freshness to the grapes.

On the nose, there is deep, dark berry fruit with notes of spice from well-integrated oak. Big firm tannins in the mouth are starting to soften in this 2017 vintage, resulting in a harmonious mouthfeel and leading to a long, dry finish.

As the evenings start to cool, this is a wine to keep in mind for a winter evening – the perfect partner for a richly-flavoured beef or lamb stew.

By Patrick Stuart
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