Vinho Verde is a Portuguese wine from the Minho province in the far north of the country. The region has many small growers, which train their vines high off the ground, in trees, on fences, and even telephone poles so there still is some room on the ground for growing food crops. Vinho Verde means “green wine” as in “young wine”, so Vinho Verdes are made to be drunk in their youth, so don’t age them. Grape varieties used for white Vinho Verde are; Loreiro, Arinto, Trajadura, Avesso and Azal. Also red and rosé Vinho Verde’s are made.
In the old days, the slight effervesce of the wine came from malolactic fermentation taking place in the bottle, normally a wine fault, but in the case of Vinho Verde, it is considered a nice “effect”. Today in most cases the effervesce comes from artificial carbonation.
The wine has an ABV of 11,5%, which for a Vinho Verde is rather high.
Color: Light white wine, pale straw, not green. Medium viscosity.
Nose: Very fruity and almost lemonade-like. Lots of aromas leap out of the glass. A happy and summery smell. Typical sweet creamy yoghurt with chunks of peach and even some banana. Vanilla ice-cream (mind you, not vanillin from wood). The wine does have tiny bubbles (effervesce) which adds to the summery feel. After a while the creaminess dissipates and the nose gets more acidic and even more refreshing. Nice green notes too. Gooseberries. Very nicely made with an interesting and nice nose.
Taste: Good balance between its acidity and sweetness. Both are quite soft. Again the acidity is the same as yoghurt. The fruits are also more of the acidic kind, like lemons and limes, with the peach and banana in the background. The nose and the taste match, whereas the nose was more creamy and sweetish, the taste is definitely more acidic. The tiny bubbles this wine has also add to the refreshing quality it has.
Probably a seafood wine, it does need a culinary companion. Perfect for sushi and I will have to try another one with asparagus! Lovely stuff.