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.