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Douro Red, Quinta do Vale Dona Maria 2007


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A spectacular blend of over 41 grape varietals of the Douro! Vinified in both stainless steel and granite lagares or vats, where the grapes are foot-trodden. The wine was matured for 20 months in French oak barrel (70% new). The schisty soils of the Douro produce wines that are rich and deeply flavored but well structured and elegant. This 2007 expresses the terroir excellently, with its deep, smoky, mineral flavors, filled with juicy red fruits backed by firm, fine tannins. This has a nice freshness, very easy to enjoy, yet quite complex with a powerful finish. 14.5% alc.

"The 2007 TINTO (QUINTA VALE D. MARIA) is a Douro field blend (a bit over 40 grapes identified, according to owner Cristiano Van Zeller). Focused and rather intense on the finish, this has its usual charm, but also considerable complexity, a touch of game and some earthiness after the first attack. It was quite funky the next day. As it airs out and its parts begin to come into harmony, it also shows beautiful blue fruit flavors, rich and sweet. Yet the tannin and focus keep it from being anything close to cloying. The intensity on the finish does make it a bit harsh on opening, and it seemed to show some heat (14.5%) the next day, but it certainly evolved beautifully for hours on Day 1, handling both its tannins and its alcohol (14.5%) well. This is a very nice Vale D. Maria, not quite as rich as its CV cousin reviewed this issue, but probably better focused and balanced. There were 3,916 six-pack cases produced. Drink 2011-2022." 93/100 Robert Parker's Wine Advocate