A game-changing red from the Douro Valley

Winemaker Matt Gant has weaved some magic with the wild, swarthy red grapes found in Portugal's Douro Valley.

2017 Quinta Da Pedra Alta, Pedra A Pedra Tinto, Douro, Portugal

£15, or £81 for six bottles with free delivery, winebuyers.com

Matt Gant, the extraordinarily talented winemaker behind the First Drop wines from the Barossa Valley in South Australia, has weaved some magic with the wild, swarthy red grapes found in the Douro Valley in Portugal. He knew exactly how to give the grapes a polish and produce a wine gleaming and velvety smooth on the palate. Matt’s desire to avoid over-extraction, which often results in coarse, harsh flavours, and which is so much a signature of old-fashioned Douro reds, makes this wine a game-changer.

Pedra A Pedra is, thankfully, not another in a long line of international, sweet-fruited, “vinonymous” reds. This sleek wine employs a variety of techniques depending on the fermentation vessel used. Foot treading is followed by gentle plunging in granite lagar fermenters, while open-topped stainless-steel tanks and picking bin ferments are simply plunged. Old French barriques and hogsheads bring subtle seasoning to the whole, and the wine is designed to sing of its unique ingredients – 50% touriga franca, 44% touriga nacional, 5% tinta barroca and 1% fernão pires.

In short, Matt and his local counterpart, João Pires, have captured the essence of the Douro and given it a welcome makeover. At 13.5% alcohol and with stunning spice and luxurious fruit, this wine is unmissable and gives us a glimpse into the Douro’s future. It is keenly priced, too.

Recommended

Britain’s ten most-hated shares – w/e 1 July
Stocks and shares

Britain’s ten most-hated shares – w/e 1 July

Rupert Hargreaves looks at Britain's ten most-hated shares, and what short-sellers are looking at now.
4 Jul 2022
Britain’s most-bought shares w/e 1 July
Stocks and shares

Britain’s most-bought shares w/e 1 July

A look at Britain’s most-bought shares in the week ending 1 July, providing an insight into how investors are thinking and where opportunities may lie…
4 Jul 2022
M&G offers a solid 10.1% yield – but future growth is uncertain
Share tips

M&G offers a solid 10.1% yield – but future growth is uncertain

Financial services group M&G has one of the highest dividend yields in the FTSE 100. But it’s a complicated company, and a tough one to analyse, says …
4 Jul 2022
We’re doing well on pensions – but we still need to do better
Pensions

We’re doing well on pensions – but we still need to do better

Pensions auto-enrolment has vastly increased the number of people in the UK with retirement savings. But we’re still not engaged enough, says Merryn S…
4 Jul 2022

Most Popular

Ray Dalio’s shrewd $10bn bet on the collapse of European stocks
European stockmarkets

Ray Dalio’s shrewd $10bn bet on the collapse of European stocks

Ray Dalio’s Bridgewater hedge fund is putting its money on a collapse in European stocks. It’s likely to pay off, says Matthew Lynn.
3 Jul 2022
UK house prices are definitely cooling off – but are they heading for a fall?
House prices

UK house prices are definitely cooling off – but are they heading for a fall?

UK house prices hit a fresh high in June, but as interest rates start to rise, the market is cooling John Stepek assesses just how much of an effect h…
30 Jun 2022
Persimmon yields 12.3%, but can you trust the company to deliver?
Share tips

Persimmon yields 12.3%, but can you trust the company to deliver?

With a dividend yield of 12.3%, Persimmon looks like a highly attractive prospect for income investors. But that sort of yield can also indicate compa…
1 Jul 2022