A superb double from the Douro including a stunning White Half Dry Port .

A superb double from the Douro including a stunning White Half Dry Port. 

Casal Dos Jordōes Porto White Half Dry, 19%, 

€26.00 Limited availability. Manning's Emporium Ballylickey; Mary Pawle

Another treasure of the Douro!

This wine represents the Jordão family tradition of generous wines of quality. “All our vineyards are located in the river Torto valley with the rigorous selection of the best grape varieties of the Douro region to create excellent wines. The predominant varieties are the Malvasia Fina, Rabigato, Viosinho, Gouveio (Verdelho) and Côdega do Larinho.”

White port is made from white grapes, such as those above. You’ll find it in a variety of styles from dry to very sweet. You’ll see a lot of sweet white port with tonic water in glasses in the Port wine area. You can also find white port with a crisp dry finish and my favourite in this style, introduced in 1934 (the port, not me!), is Taylor’s Chip Dry.

And this is a new favourite! I had noted the recommendation to mix it with tonic but once I tasted it neat, I postponed that option, indefinitely! The pleasure on the palate is just so immense - you need nothing else at all. With its golden robe, its intense and complex aromas of dried fruit, all of which follow through to the palate, I knew I had found a magnificent and unusual wine that I would be so glad to hang around with. And that feeling was confirmed immediately by my coconspirator. Very Highly Recommended.

Casal dos Jordões has been in business since 1870, always in possession of the Jordões family. But for a long time, they sold their wine in bulk. Then, in 1994, they started bottling their own and went on to become leaders in organic port production. And our white is a terrific example of their craft.

Casal Dos Jordōes Grande Reserva Douro (DOC) 2011, 14%

€23.00 New to the portfolio; queries to Mary Pawle

This full-bodied dark-ruby wine comes from the hot and dry Douro region of Portugal and is made from much the same grapes as port. Intense ripe fruit aromas, including a touch of fig, some toasty touches too. No shortage of those fruit flavours in the slightly sweet spicy palate. It is voluminous, round, with a beautiful structure and a persistent finish. Very Highly Recommended.

Touriga Nacional and Touriga Franca are the grapes featured, all organic and grown on shale soil (from the same family as schist). Interestingly, both hands and feet are used in the transition. Picking is manual and the grapes are then crushed by foot in the lagar (a large stone trough). They say the technique permits great extraction of colour and long tannins.

Pairings recommended are tapas, grilled meat (especially lamb), grilled veg, strong casseroles. By the way, there is a possibility of some natural sediment, so decant if you wish. I did, but didn’t notice any sediment at all.