WINE REVIEW: Two Summer Whites From Portugal
by Andrew Chalk
We have covered the wines of vinho verde here before, now we are receiving wines from subregions of this exciting part of northern Portugal. The subregion of Monção e Melgaço is one of the 9 sub-regions of Vinho Verde and it produces elevated Alvarinho (Albarino) driven whites.
Understood to be the birthplace of Alvarinho (where its provenance even predates written history), Monção e Melgaço is made up of two medieval towns occupying a unique microterroir along the Minho River, protected from the Atlantic influence that defines the rest of the region, and allowing for better ripeness and more pronounced aromatics—producing a distinct Alvarinho expression, and one elevated by a new generation of producers experimenting with barrel and lees aging, two practices not commonly associated with Portuguese whites.
The wines are...
2019 Foral de Melgaço Alvarinho Old Vines, Monção e Melgaço, Vinho Verde, Portugal ($19)
2019 Muralhas de Monção, Vinho Verde Branco ($8)
Both of these wines are crisp whites just hankering to be quaffed on a hot summer day (maybe with almonds) or served with white-fleshed fish.
Recommended and good value.