Quinta do Lagar Novo, Arinto Reserva, 2017

Quinta do Lagar Novo, Arinto Reserva, 2017


Lisbon, Portugal
DOC Alenquer

Luis Carvalho brought his family together at the turn of the millenium to re-fashion a 200+ year old estate into a sleek and modern, white-wine focused producer. The family's property can be found about 40 minutes north of Lisbon, in the virtually unknown - even to the Portuguese - Alenquer DOC. A focus on single-varietal blends dominates at the estate with bottlings made from familiar varietals like Chardonnay, Marsanne and Viognier alongside the lesser known Arinto, which is indigenous to this region, and a crowd-pleasing white blend called 5a.

Arinto is known as the "queen" variety of the region and comes from a segment of  the vineyards about 15 years old. Fermentation occurs with indigenous yeasts in stainless steel vats - a move that preserves the freshness and acidity of the wine - while the final fermentation takes place in used oak barrels, for about 10 months. 

The flavours are intense but velvety, lining up fresh lime, green apple and mint alongside a smorgasbord of fine exotic fruits. There's some floral complexity on the followthrough, a very persistent finish and a just-the-right-amount nudge of acidity. 

Food pairing recommendations include seafood, seafood and more seafood. Seared scallops finished with heaps of butter; lobster rolls; crab stuffed ravioli with beurre blanc; or, go for the full Portuguese experience with bacalhau. Not feeling seafood, or averse because of allergy concerns? A lightly dressed salad with a humble rotisserie chicken is the kind of low-energy, weeknight dinner you need in your life.

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