After transforming Quinta Nova de Nossa Senhora do Carmo into a reference in the area of wine and wine tourism, in the Douro, Luísa Amorim intends to do the same at Taboadella, in the Dão region.
Time runs by. It was more than 20 years in the Douro, transformed into a success story that still continues, and a new challenge was needed to 'shake the waters'. This moment came two years ago, with the acquisition of Taboadella, and the inauguration of the winery and wine tourism in June of this year.
Situated in a mountainous enclave in the northern center of Portugal, the Dão region is surrounded by five mountains and consists of plateaus of essentially granite rocks and land with good drainage. This unique geoformology that originates different micro-terroirs contributes to a huge diversity of profiles from white varieties and paints. It is not surprising that Luísa Amorim, manager of the family's wine projects, decided to invest in the region. "We always thought Dão had enormous potential. It is a classic wine region in Portugal and the first to be demarcated for non-liqueur wines, and it was here that we found the conditions we wanted to move forward with the project. Taboadella has a unique vineyard stain that allows to produce great wines, with a remarkable typicality managing to maintain this ancestral character of Dão which is what we really want, says Luísa Amorim.The winery offers a winemaking capacity for 290,000 liters per harvest
The 2500 m2 winery, perfectly framed on the forest plateau, was designed by Carlos Castanheira, a reference in national architecture, and offers a winemaking capacity of 290,000 liters per harvest. The cellar is prepared to work by gravity and consists of two naves (winemaking and barrels) designed to maintain a perfect balance between light and shade, allowing only the entrance of natural light needed to create the ideal environment and temperature. With a strong connection to nature, wood and cork coatings assume a relevant position in this project, where the traditional vineyard is not watered, in a very sustainable dry farming system, in the 25 plots of vineyards in integrated production mode and an average density of 3500 plants per hectare.
The mountain massif in Dão protects well the slopes of Taboadella in the Pereiro valley and the Dry Land, located between 400 and 530 meters of altitude. Like other terroirs from large wine regions in the world, Taboadella benefits from a huge interaction between easily meteorized porphyloid granite soil and its topography with coarse elements associated with slope of the slopes that allow rapid and in-depth drainage and drainage in July, August and September, even before harvest. And it is by this perfect combination of the high temperatures in the summer combined with the drainage and freshness of the granite soil that resulted from the alteration of two types of granites of Paleozoic age, allow a slower and homogeneous maturation evolution, giving rise to wines that evolve smoothly and balancedly.
The heart of Taboadella lies in the ancient varieties and the mother vines: Jaen, Touriga Nacional, Alfrocheiro and Tinta Pinheira that all life gave rise to new cuttings contributing to the original easing, coming from very resistant vines and perfectly adapted to the place. In the 1980s the vineyard was partially replanted, introducing new varieties such as Tinta Roriz and Encruzado, Cerceal-Branco and Bical. Today, the average age of vines is 30 years and it is all this genetic heritage that leaves a mark of great elegance and a character proper to this unique terroir. The wine part could not be better delivered to the super team Jorge Alves and Rodrigo Costa (in Oenology) and Ana Mota (in viticulture).
As if to complement the wine landscape of the property, there are still traces of a Roman Villae, next to ribeira das Fontainhas, at the time a property of upper rural class, consisting of house, cellar, barn and other small buildings. It will be in the former manor house, currently in recovery, that, in 2021, Luisa prepares to open a small and exclusive hotel, with eight rooms and a suite (the latter rented on an exclusive basis), with interior decoration project signed by Ana do Vale. "The Villae 1255 opens next year but we already have our wine tourism space running. Here worked the old barn, also recovered and with the signature of Ana do Vale, where in addition to a space for tasting we have a store where you can buy the wines of Taboadella and also some pieces of decoration and gastronomic products of the region", reveals Luisa.
The first wines produced at Taboadella have already been launched for the market. Villae are lighter wines, of traditional white varieties and paints of the Taboadella vineyard, with soft tannins, batch wines without wood that evidence the character of Taboadella. Intense, they are delicately fragrant, lighter, with soft tannins and a refreshing acidity.
then the Taboadella by castes: "In classical regions like Dão where the variety has high prominence, it seemed fundamental to us to praise the endemic varieties and we decided to create a range of 4 monovarietal reserves: Encruzado, Touriga Nacional, Alfrocheiro and Jaen", revealed the enology team. Finally "a great region deserves great wines and behold, the Grande Villae, wines of rare classical structure, that cross the time, the generations, life in this community of other times", also ends the team.
PHOTOS: João Ferrand