2021 proved to be a year of many uncertainties in the vineyard and of great wines. The consistency that has characterized our path over the last 40 years was reflected, once again, in the recognition achieved.
THE USUAL CERTAINTY IN A YEAR OF UNCERTAINTY
In 2021, there was a constant uncertainty in the vineyard, allowing, in the end, to reinforce a greater certainty: even in a year full of difficulties, our viticulture team and the more than 150 families of winegrowers who work with us, managed, once again, to obtain grapes of singular quality. The unstable weather conditions that made this year so challenging forced daily monitoring, where the care put into the vineyard, in each plot, in each vine, made all the difference. As they say around here: “You have to talk to the vines every day”. – Read our 2021 Vintaged Report here.
The unique quality of the grapes gave rise to a fresher harvest, with moderate alcohol, creating the ideal conditions to work with a characteristic that we increasingly appreciate: precision.
From the valley’s plots, we harvested the grapes for Soalheiro Clássico, our most emblematic wine, which takes us back to our origin and tradition. Faithful to its timeless characteristics, such as aromatic freshness, flavor intensity and remarkable potential for evolution in bottle, the 2021 harvest proved to be particularly fresh and elegant. Discover Soalheiro Alvarinho (Clássico) 2021.
RECOGNITION OF THE COMMITMENT TO SUSTAINABILITY AND INNOVATION
2021 was a remarkable year also for the awards we won. And it’s always good, in retrospect, to acknowledge the recognition of our work.
World’s Best Vineyards considered us one of the 50 best wine tourism experiences in the world, a recognition for the work of the entire Territory, which has placed Monção and Melgaço, more and more, as a reference destination.
We were awarded an Honorable Mention, in the category of Sustainable Companies, in the National Agriculture Award.
In the Decanter World Wine Awards, the largest wine competition in the world, Primeiras Vinhas 2019 has reached 97 points and was distinguished as “Best in Show”. The 2021 edition was the largest ever, with 18094 wines from 56 countries in the competition and around 170 judges, including 44 Masters of Wine and 11 Master Sommeliers. Only 50 wines received this award, the greatest in the competition.
This March, in an article about influential women and award-winning wines, Decanter highlighted our co-founder, Maria Palmira Cerdeira, and mentioned that Primeiras Vinhas is the first Vinho Verde in history to achieve this distinction. Read the full article “Behind the bottle: 12 influential women and their award-winning wines”.
In the notes published in The Wine Advocate, Mark Squires highlighted Primeiras Vinhas 2019 and Clássico 2020 with 92 Parker points, and Granit 2020, Mineral Rosé 2020 and ALLO 2020 with 91, 90 and 89 Parker points, respectively.
Granit 2019 obtained 96 points in “Albariño vs Alvarinho”, a blind tasting of 83 wines from Portugal and Spain, promoted by the prestigious British magazine Decanter, having been the best scored by the panel, made up of Master of Wine Sarah Jane Evans, Sarah Ahmed and Beth Willard.
Sarah Ahmed also included Granit 2019 in her “Top 10 Wines of Portugal 2021”, published in Decanter.
Master of Wine Dirceu Vianna Junior also awarded Granit 94 points and highlighted it as one of “the bottles to buy” in the article “Wine trends for 2021”, published in Decanter.
Alt om Vin magazine and some of the most prestigious Swedish wine journalists awarded the Gold Medal to the 2020 vintages of Clássico and Granit, considering Clássico “the best white wine of the year”.
Clássico 2020 also received the highest award in the TEXSOM International Wine Competition, the Jury Selection Medal, and Granit 2019 the Gold Medal.
From our range of natural wines, Terramatter 2019 received the Gold Medal at the International Biological Wines Competition, 95 points.
João Paulo Martins, in his book on the Sub-region, with a selection of the best Alvarinho wines, tasting notes and a framework of the Territory – “Monção e Melgaço – Guia de Vinhos 2021” -, recognized the consistency and aging capacity in bottle of our wines. Granit was considered the best Alvarinho of the 2020 harvest and Bruto Barrica 2017 the best sparkling wine.
The potential of our Territory for the production of infusions and the knowledge we have been accumulating was, for the first time, recognized in one of the most prestigious competitions in the world, Les Thés du Monde. The Lemon Verbena variety won the Silver Medal, and the Lemon-Thyme and Chocolate Mint varieties won the Gourmet Medal.
These were some of the many awards won in 2021, but we are pretty sure the best is yet to come.