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Nortico Rosé is produced on the south bank of the Minho River in plots so small they are called jardins, or gardens. Soils here are granite and schist, and though it sees a lot of rainfall (up to 2,000mm/80 inches annually) the inland area is warmer than the coast, allowing for perfect ripening and balance in the fruit. Historically, this area was known for red wines, vinhos tintos. These light aromatic reds were locally called Palhete. This elegant, dry rosé evokes that style and pays homage to the handcrafted nature of not just the wines but all artisanal products hailing from northern Portugal. In the words of Rui Abecassis, founder of Obrigado Vinhos, “Nortico is one of those projects that has been in the making for quite some time. It started in my family's small tile atelier, where I learned to love tiles. The traditional ceramic tile atelier was more a labor of passion and tenacity than business, as it always seemed to be on the brink of bankruptcy! To this day, tiles are produced exactly like in the 18th century, each one shaped from scratch and painted by hand. Walking the streets of Oporto or Lisboa you may encounter tiles on both modest and important buildings, in churches, hospitals, and stores, in private houses and public gardens. Tiles are a durable building material, and an early form of storytelling and graphic design. We wanted the Nortico label to evoke those tiles to capture that spirit and Portuguese aesthetics.”
WHAT MAKES THIS WINE UNIQUE?
Extraordinarily fresh, light colored rosé from northern Portugal, where expertise is required to grow red varieties. Nortico’s grapes are farmed on the south banks of the river Minho in tiny plots on the northern border with the Spain-Galicia province, and its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean plus the intense minerality offer excellent structure and a kiss of salinity on the palate. Nortico has no added CO2, but its bright acidity gives the illusion of petillance on the palate.
2020 89 IWR
20% Vinhao, 40% Alvarelhao, 40% Pedral. Sustainably grown vines planted from 1970 to 1980 in schist and granite soil at 200 to 300 m (656-984 ft.) elevation
Nortico Rosé is dangerously easy to drink on its own, but complements all manner of shellfish, seafood, and simple cheese dishes.
VINIFICATION AND AGEING:
Grapes are selected at the winery. Whole clusters are pressed lightly (0.3Bar) and the juice ferments at 54F for up to 36 hours. Primary filtration and cold stabilization, then 4 months in stainless steel tanks. Filtration prior to bottling in February.
LOCATION, SOIL, CLIMATE:
Nortico vineyards are located on the southern banks of the Minho River. The vines are tended in schist and granite at 200-300 m (656-984 ft) elevation. Temperature from April to October average 61 F.
40% Alvarelhao, 40% Pedral, 20% Vinhao. Alvarelhao and Pedral contribute freshness and complexity and Vinhao brings volume and weight. On the nose, bright red berry and watermelon fruit are complemented by saline minerality. On the palate, light, fresh and delicate, with mouthwatering red fruit and refreshing acidity.