Posts Filed Under on the road

Alentejo Postcard, Part 2 (Herdade de Coelheiros Recent Releases)

Coelheiros vineyard 1

Among the 800 hectares of property upon which Alentejo’s Herdade de Coelheiros grows walnuts and cork trees sits about 50 hectares of vines. Though their history date back to the mid-1400s (as a hunting estate), those vines that source Coelheiros’ modern wines were replanted over 500 years later, in 1981.

That’s because under Portugal’s dictatorship, the region was designated to grow grain, rather than to adhere to its ancient tradition of the vine.

Luís Patrão

Coelheiros’ Luís Patrão

Winemaking in Alentejo has a rich history, of course, but interestingly for this formerly remote area in Alentejo, wine consumption was local; after all, its residents weren’t likely to get vino from anywhere else for the better part of 400 or so years.

Colheiros has a head start on much of Alentejo when it comes to the region’s modern New Renaissance: along with Esporão, they were one of the first wine companies to reinvest in the region after the fall of the Estado Novo. And, apparently, the time has come to reinvent themselves yet again…

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Alentejo Postcard, Part 1 (Cartuxa Recent Releases)

Vinted on June 4, 2020 binned in elegant wines, kick-ass wines, on the road, sexy wines, wine review

Cartuxa vines

Portugal’s Cartuxa is fairly well-known for being one of two wineries run by a wide-ranging non-profit foundation (focusing on developing the Évora region culturally). It’s equally well-known for being named after a monastery and having roots going back to 15th Century Jesuit monks, and still employing amphora from the 1800s.

CartuxaBut Cartuxa is most famous for producing one of Portugal’s most sought-after and historically expensive dry wines: the (arguably overpriced) Pêra-Manca Tinto, a wine that I’m not even going to discuss here, since during my media visit to Cartuxa back in December it wasn’t even poured.

Despite getting Heismaned pretty hard on the PM Tinto pour, I can’t help but have a great deal of respect for Cartuxa, and not just because of their foundation’s mission of community development; their more affordable wines are, simply put, damned good ones…

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Two From the Road (Sicily Wrap-up)

Vinted on April 23, 2020 binned in elegant wines, kick-ass wines, on the road, wine review

Things move a bit more on rilassato side when you’re dealing with Sicily.

Which is the excuse that I’m employing to justify only now (a mere six months later) getting around to finishing up my disparate coverage from my last media tour there. While I don’t exactly miss the act of traveling itself during this bizarre time of being in The Great Lock Down, I pretty much always miss being in Sicily.

It’s in that spirit of wistful nostalgia that I offer up two distinctly and uniquely different, but also distinctly and uniquely Sicilian, wines of note, in the hopes that you might find yourselves able to sip them somehow to ease the pain of not being able to currently get your butts over to Sicily yourselves at the moment…

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In the Shadow of the Gods (Tasting Sicily’s Diodoros Nero d’Avola)

Vinted on March 18, 2020 binned in kick-ass wines, on the road, wine review
Diodoros Icarus

“Flyyyyyy on your waaaaayyyy, like an eeeeagle, flyyy as hiiiigh as the suuuuuuunnnnn…”

It’s not often that you get to drink wine made from a vineyard that sits in a proper tourist attraction. But that’s how we roll here on 1WD when we’re touring Sicily. And while it’s always my pleasure to talk Sicily to people, I figured that Italy could use the extra love these days in the time of COVID-19.

Diodoros vineyard viewMy Sicilian media trek last year afforded me the opportunity to visit the somewhat inappropriately named Valle dei Templi, a striking UNESCO site that sits on a hilltop in Agrigento, and is home to some of the most magnificently preserved examples of ancient Greek temples and archeological findings in all of Europe. The fact that they grow wine grapes there is kind of a bonus (head over to the Napa Valley Wine Academy website for more vinous findings from that Sicily jaunt).

The particular wine made from said grapes is CVA Canicattì’s “Diodoros” Nero d’Avola-based red, named after ancient Greek historian Diodorus Siculus. Unlike the temples, the vines that source Diodoros actually do grow in the valley, right in the shadows of the temple of Giunone and within an Olympic discus-toss of the rest of Agrigento’s most famous tourist attraction…

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