Portuguese red wine, not counting Port, is the best kept secret in the wine world. These wines are incredibly exciting and totally different than any other reds from any other country. Of course, the area makes a difference, as it does here, since the Alentejo region in Southern Portugal is a jewel.
However, here it's the grapes that are unique. Most are not grown anywhere else. The prominent one in our blend is Aragonez (40%), a Spanish grape known as Tempranillo there. It supplies the lilting freshness, spice and earthy elements. Next comes the Trincadeira (30%), a powerful dark grape which shares the same qualities in the wine. We finish off with Alicante Bouchet (20%), named after the man who crossed several varieties in the mid-1800s. It adds even more dark color and presence. And last, but not least, is Touriga Nacional (10%) the superstar grape of Port.
Villar was founded roughly 100 years ago by Penedo Gordo who was completely taken by the Alentejo region. Today it is managed by the 5th generation and covers nearly 300 acres of grapes. It is the largest and most impressive estate in the region.
To say that this is a mouthful of wine would be an understatement. The plethora of dark skinned fruit explodes out of the glass with the promise that big is best. The flavors follow suit with black plum, cassis, and currants dominating. The stunning finish begs for a charred tri-tip lathered in garlic and sage or roast duck with dried cranberries.