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The Vinha Da Fonte Reserva 2021 is a $8.99 Trader Joe’s import wine though it is available in other countries. This Red Blend is produced by Casa Ermelinda Freitas, a winery in business since 1920 in the south of Portugal inside the Setúbal Peninsula Region.
This wine is a blend of Castelão (25% a local grape used for blending), Touriga Nacional (20% this is the National Red grape of Portugal, similar to what tempranillo is to Rioja and what Cabernet Sauvignon is to Bordeaux). This Red blend is rounded off with 25% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Syrah. The back label mentions Alicante Bosuschet but the tasting notes don’t.
Portugal has a long and excellent wine culture history, but Portugal generally sold their wines locally and did not make a great effort to export wine. The worldwide economic meltdown of 2008 changed that. To boost the economy the Portuguese government promoted wine exports to bring much-needed revenue into the country.
At first, Portuguese wines were tailored to Portuguese tastes which were based on wines made to be served with the meal. Much of the wine-drinking world does not have a strong wine and food culture. Often wine is sipped on its own and not paired with a meal, food wines have a different balance than sipping wine. Portuguese wines are now produced to both pair with the meal and sip well.
The Vinha Da Fonte Reserva 2021 was fermented in stainless steel tanks and was aged in French oak barrels for 9 months. The alcohol content is 14.5%.
The Vinha Da Fonte Reserva 2021 Tasting Notes
The color is deep, dark, black cherry, with black highlights. The nose is ripe blackberry, licorice, herbs, spice, chocolate, black coffee, and raspberry. The Vinha Da Fonte Reserva 2021 is decadent and smooth, this nine-buck TJ’s wine has some depth.
This Portuguese Red tastes like rich, ripe blackberry, chocolate fudge, cherry, soft herbs, a little cappuccino, and blueberry. The mid-palate shows black cherry, a hint of cream, and tart cranberry.
The tannins are in the mix and with the grape selection I thought this may be tannic wine, but the tannins are soft and smooth and help to bring structure to the wine. The acidity is well-balanced.
- The Vinha Da Fonte Reserva 2021 is a very tasty Red Blend.
- It shows more depth and flavor than the typical $8.99 wine.
- This is an excellent sipping wine, but would pair well with hardy cold-weather meals.