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Vinho Verde: Dom Diogo Padeiro from Quinta da Raza

Dom Diogo Padeiro from Quinta da Raza

Even though it’s designated as a “Vinho Verde”, the Dom Diogo Padeiro from Quinta da Raza is not green or even white – it’s pink!

The Minho province is home to the crisp, dry white Vinho Verde we love to sip in the summertime, but folks there also make pink and red wines from local grapes. Most Vinho Verde rosé is mass-produced, simple and refreshing but not all that interesting. Quinta da Raza is a small winery run by Jose Diogo Teixeria and his wife Mafalda. The winery has been in Jose’s family since the 1800s. The climate and soil in this area are unique in the Vinho Verde, as the soils are rich with granite and schist, and there is less rainfall and more sun than in other Vinho Verde sub-zones. Jose farms organically, growing his grapes for quality, and his wines are more complex than most Vinho Verdes. They are also also more expensive than most, but at $11.95 a bottle for the rosé and $9.95 for the white that’s not really saying much. There are two grapes commonly used in in Vinho Verde rosé but Jose uses just one: Padeiro. Padeiro is an early-ripening grape with a wonderful aroma of ripe, red cherries.

Like his white Vinho Verde, this rosé has a perky little effervescence. From the dark color you can tell that there’s a good amount of body to this wine. It’s not sweet, but it has a ripe fruitiness reminiscent of cherries, plums and berries. Despite a rich body the abundant acidity and fizz make for a clean, refreshing finish.

Sip this tasty rose on the last warm days of summer, preferably outdoors in the sunshine! It’s fine as an aperitif on its own, but makes a great food wine as well. The combination of fruit and acidity here makes the Jose’s rosé a great companion to classic American cook-out foods like grilled burgers and dogs, creamy potato salad and coleslaw.

Julie Cappellano is the General Manager and Wine Buyer at Formaggio Kitchen South End, Boston.

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