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2016 Maria Gomes, Luis Pato

2016 Maria Gomes, Luis Pato

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Another absolute steal from Portugal! I believe the 2013 version was a Jancis Robinson Wine of the Week and also scored highly on but it’s a wine that should be drunk as fresh as can be found so that the vibrant, minerally, ripe fruits at their, well, most vibrant so we are offering the newly arrived 2014. Maria Gomes is the grape, also known as Fernão Pires in parts of Portugal, and it makes a delicious glass of wine - this is from 35 year old vines, and includes 15% Sercialinho in the mix, which really pulls together the gentler elements of the dominant variety, resulting in a zesty, dry white which should only be sold in magnums (or larger!).

Luis Pato is considered something of a rebel, a ‘maverick’ if you forgive the use of this overused word these days more often applied to someone who wears a bright neckerchief rather than the individual that genuinely follows his own path and then has to perhaps face the consequences.

He took over from his father Joao at Quinta do Ribeirinho in Bairrada on the Atlantic Coast where the Pato family have been making wine since the 18th century, and made his first wine in 1980; a pure version of the local Baga grape (imagine a cross between Nebbiolo and Pinot Noir). In 1985 Pato started to introduce new ideas such as de-stemming and using new French casks, the use of rotary fermenters; these changes and many other other variations away from the considered norm led to him being ostracised from the DO 1999, and thus his wines now labelled as 'Beiras DO', a Vinho Regional DO that covers both Bairrada and Dao. Ironically, he is now probably the best-known wine-producer in the area, and has now been joined by his daughter Filipa who has her own label Filipa Pato Wines.

Luis Pato has 60 hectares of vineyards which are planted with the red grape varieties Baga Touriga Nacional and Tinto Cao. The white grape varieties planted are Maria Gomes, Bical, Cercial da Bairrada and Sercialinho (relatives of the Sercial of Madeira).

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    Luis Pato
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