Goblet of white wine on wooden table on wooden wall background. Fotalia

Wine: The fresh face of Arinto

Arinto is one of the most interesting and versatile of Portugal’s indigenous white grape varieties. It is perhaps best known for rich and complex whites with great ageing potential, often aged in oak.

But when treated lightly, it is a grape that can produce fresh and vibrant whites that can often remind us of a nice Muscadet. These days, the grape is grown extensively all over the country but has always been the main variety of the Lisbon region, especially the sub-region of Bucelas.

One of the leading producers of quality wine on the Lisbon region is Quinta de Chocapalha, whose Chardonnay varietal I rate as one of the best in the country (think Chablis style) and their Arinto is an excellent example of the fresh young wines that can be made from this grape.

The wine is a bright pale-yellow colour with intense citric and mineral notes on the nose, fresh and well-balanced in the mouth with a nice dry finish. Well-suited to pair with fish and seafood.

By Patrick Stuart

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