what: 2009 Callabriga, Douro DOC, Portugal
ABV: 13.5 percent
where: Total Wine, Harbison
The Douro region is also home to this wine’s more famous cousin: port. As the demand for port has receded a bit, the producers in the hilly and sun-baked upper reaches of the Douro River have wisely added some full-bodied red wines to their repertoire. Touriga nacional, tinto francesa, tinto roriz (tempranillo), and tinto cão are the main grapes used in this blend — the same ones used for port. The blend makes for a tasty full-bodied wine without being overpowering. It’s reminiscent of a good GSM (a grenache-syrah-mourvedre blend) from the southern Rhône. Perfect with grilled meats, burgers, game or strong cheese (cheddar or manchego) or as a warming wintertime wine by the fire. These undiscovered Portuguese wines offer good values. Take advantage!
Appearance: Dark magenta, almost black.
Nose: Expansive dark red fruit with berries and roses.
Taste: Deep dark juicy fruit, dusty tannins and a long finish.
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