QUICK SIP: Quinta da Fronteira | Selecção do Enólogo | Douro | Portugal | 2009 | $20 | 90 pts

Portuguese Wine AFrom the Douro region of northern Portugal — home of Port — comes this hearty red table wine, a blend of Touriga Nacional, Tinta Roriz, and Touriga Franca (three varieties commonly used in Port production).  It’s full-bodied and brawny, with aromas of roasted coffee beans, black tea, and iron followed by flavors of ripe blackberries, grilled plums, dark chocolate covered almonds, and charred oak, with glimmers of clove and orange peel on a long, satisfying finish.  The wine is dense and chewy, with firm tannins balanced by moderate acids, and strikes pitch-perfect harmony between fruit and earth characteristics.  Sip it on its own or with steak, grilled eggplant, and meaty stews.  Now is an opportune time to try Portuguese wines, as quality has surged over the past several years and there are many more to choose from thanks to a growing presence in the U.S. wine market.  Some excellent values are to be had — Quinta da Fronteira included.  For more information on this wine and other Quinta da Fronteira selections, visit them virtually at www.quintadafronteira.com.  We found this bottle at Total Wine in Alexandria, Virginia, and it is available at their stores nationwide.

Portuguese Wine Regions:  The map below provides a visual snapshot of Portugal’s wine regions.  Thanks to the folks at Sunvil for sharing this map.  For more information about these regions, visit Sunvil virtually at http://blog.sunvil.co.uk/2013/08/the-wine-growing-regions-of-portugal.html.

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