Casa Ferreirinha, Reserva Especial Douro 2009

Regular price £135.00
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  • Type:

    Red

  • Country:

    Portugal

  • Region:

    Douro

  • Area:

    *****

  • ABV:

    14.50%

  • Grape:

    Touriga Franca

  • Grape Blend:

    Touriga Franca 45%, Touriga Nacional 30%, Tinta Roriz 15%

  • Vegan:

    0

  • Organic:

    0

  • Winemaker:

    Luis Sottomayor

  • Bottle Size:

    750ml

Casa Ferreirinha Reserva Especial Douro 2009 - Wine

Tasting Notes

The 2nd wine of Casa Ferreirinha, Reserva Especial is made in the same way as the top wine, Barca Velha using the finest hand-picked grapes in the Douro Superior. Aged for 2 years in French oak, it spends another five years ageing before release.

Production Notes

First created over 50 years ago, this mature red remains one of the pillars upon which the reputation of Casa Ferreirinha rests. Only 16 vintages have been declared, and the wines are selected only from the finest parcels of grapes. The vineyards can be found throughout the Douro region, which is divided into three sub-regions: the Lower Corgo with an Atlantic climate; the Upper Corgo, with a Mediterranean climate; and the Douro Superior, with a hot and dry continental climate. The soil in the Douro Valley is made up of schist - a slate-like metamorphic rock that is poor in nutrients and has useful water retention properties. The poor quality of the soil forces the grapes to produce low yields but in turn very high-quality grapes. This wine was vinified at the Quinta da Leda winery from grapes selected from the estates own plots, and those from adjacent vineyards located at higher altitude. These grapes were vinified separately, by grape variety, or in batches selected at the vineyard. After soft-crushing and full destemming, the grapes were transferred to stainless-steel tanks, where long maceration and alcoholic fermentation allowed the inherent qualities of the grape skins to be transferred harmoniously to the wine.

Critics Reviews

Wine Advocate 93+pts (2009) - The 2009 Reserva Especial is mostly a 45/30 blend of Touriga Franca and Touriga Nacional, with 15% Tinta Roriz and 10% Tinto C�o, aged for 16 months in 75% new French oak. It comes in at 14.5% alcohol. Very muscular, this has all the warmth of this difficult and very hot vintage. The fruit marches right up to the line of too ripe and perhaps goes over it. The wine shows dark baked-plum flavors and just a hint of prune. I liked it anyway, but it is hard to call it a great Reserva Especial, even with some elements of greatness to it. The structure here is astonishingly good, for one thing, leaving this tight and powerful. That's not unusual for this big vintage or the brand. However, it simply lacks the balance of the other wines. Personally, I'd take the 2009 Quinta da Leda (not seen for this issue) or the 2015. They may not be as attention-getting, but they are far fresher, particularly the 2015. Some may be happier with this, to be sure, others probably not. Let's start here and see if this holds its balance as it ages. A little caution is warranted. It may yet make its case in the cellar, and these tend to age very well�although (beware...) this is not the freshest year. There were 1,500 cases produced.

Producer Profile

This historic producer, founded in 1952, is named after the legendary Porto matriarch Dona Antonia Ferreira. Affectionately nicknamed 'Ferreirinha' by her countrymen, this was the first house in the region dedicated to making still wines. Purchased by Sogrape in 1987, it has 520 hectares of vineyard in the Douro in all of its three sub-regions: Lower Corgo, Upper Corgo and Douro Superior. The winemaking is headed up by Luis Sottomayor, who restrains the Douro's natural exuberance to produce wines that have a freshness, like Esteva and Papa Figos, allied to a wonderful depth and texture, as with Vinha Grande Tinto and Quinta da Leda. The care with which Luis selects the fruit for each wine is evident in the quality of the white wines in particular. Most whites from the Douro display the hallmarks of heat, yet the 'Planalto', from higher vineyards, is deliciously fresh and vibrant. A blend of Viosinho, Malvasia Fina, Gouveio, Codega, Arinto, Rabigato and Moscatel, each variety is fermented separately in stainless steel tanks and blended prior to bottling. The Vinha Grande white is barrel fermented and aged for eight months, yet is still fresh and textured. It is a single-estate wine from the Quinta do Sairrao, which is located at a high altitude in the Cima Corgo region, and is a blend of Viosinho, Arinto, Gouveio, Codega and Rabigato. The reds - made primarily from indigenous grape varieties like Touriga Nacional, Tinta Roriz, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cao, Tinta Amarela and Tinta Barroca - are among the most exciting in the Douro. They range from the unoaked Esteva, which is fresh and lifted, with a step up to the lightly oaked and more textured Papa Figos, through to the Vinha Grande, which punches above its weight, and then the finest selection from Quinta da Leda. Two of Portugal's most fabled wines sit on the apogee of this property's production: Reserva Especial and Barca Velha. Luis Sottomayor is scrupulous in his production of these wines, and only makes Barca Velha in indisputably oustanding vintages.