Casal da Azenha Vinho de Mesa Branco 2008, Colares Lisboa

Looking at the photo and headline above some of you might think I really must be a wine molesting monster! I'd understand completely, if you think so! Honestly, how can I possibly dare to drink such a wine at a such virgin-like stage!? This stuff is supposed to be consume in 10, 20, 30 or whatever years ... Well I guess, I am appalled by my courage to publicly admit such a horrid sin! I am aware of the durability of grand old Antonio Bernardino Paulo da Silva wines. Having written all of that … Today I just don't care! I am highly happy with myself! Because this shit was like a metaphorical sip of the Atlantic Ocean! Intensely driven by stern, elaborate and salty (literal ones) mineral characteristics! More about that a little bit later ...

First, I'd like to introduce you to some wine related facts. This Casal da Azenha Vinho de Mesa Branco 2008 from nearly ninety year old Antonio Bernardino Paulo da Silva is a living evergreen'ish monument of Portuguese white wine. As far as I know this one is a blend made from autochthonous grape varietals like Arinto, Bical as well as Malvasia (plus a few minor shares)! The origin of this very old style blend is Colares Region directly situated on the Atlantic Ocean just west of Lisbon. The ungrafted vines are cultivated on sandy vineyards with substantial layers of lime, chalk and basalt. The aging took place in large mahogany barrels for at very least three years. Well, after all this 2008 is the current edition. Let's have a sip ...

My visual impression could be summed up as: sun-dyed straw yellow reflexes with a minor green'ish sparkles, hardly any particles and beautifully clear transparency. At first the nose seemed either highly shy or simple too preoccupied with typical preteen allures. Concise: there not much to sniff. About an hour later filigree fragrances of guava, mild cantaloupe, mashed red apples, semi sun-dyed green meadow grass, rustic sea salt, assorted green herbs (mainly nettles and yarrow), green bananas and as the hours went by more mild indications of mild scenty of nutty oxidation plus a few drops of the often mentioned and never explained - I won't do it either - cat pee. In the focus of my palate were those already mentioned almost overwhlemingly powerful and cheek pinching mineral characteristics. They were rough, stern, not too beefy, really subtle, slightly devious (in a positively challenging sense) and overall dominating. I was like a salty grip of the Atlantic Ocean. It was intriguing, wild, stormy and uncannyly appealing at the same time. I don't really know how to explain it properly. Surely it was still quite a bit harshly phenolic and definitely not straightforwardly likeable. But there was and will be – for a very long time – a unique dense character to this one. Its actual fruit flavours seemed highly fresh, very filigree and well in place. There were flavours of Williams pear – without the excessive alcohol, very fresh cantaloupe, guava, plenty of grassland – again a bit sun-dyed, relatively mild green herbs, a few ideas of still a bit green hazelnuts, hints of petrol and subtle as well as slightly lactic seeming creaminess. Hell, I really enjoyed this stuff! It was surprisingly airy, strikingly young (without being obtrusive) and wonderfully complicated. Just the way I love it! For sure very very decent ***** or even more! I am not really sure how to rate this. It is simply too unusual. I just loved it – having written that, I am pretty sure many people will not consider this one as a treat! It was, is and will be a pretty demanding fellow! 

By the way. I had this one with a Zalto Universal glass in March 2015.

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