Vinho Verde, Casal Mendes, Portugal

Big part of vinho verde you can find in the German market, and probably not only here, tastes like sweetened sparkling water with a portion of citric acid. One might argue that it is not the best wine you can get from Alvarinho grapes, as far it’s made from this variety because it is not necessary according to the DOC rules. Let’s just think of those great creations from Albariño (the Galician variant of the name), which Rías Baixas usually offers.

But recently I tried some nice vinho verde in two completely different restaurants: a Turkish one – Osmans Töchter, and a Chinese one – Toca Rouge (both worth of visiting, once you are in Berlin, whereas the second one is better value for money). In both cases it was the same wine: Casal Mendes’ Vinho Verde. I got even more excited once I discovered how much cheaper it is in our Mediterranean supermarket. I guess I paid like € 4,50. You can imagine that in the restaurants they take four times more.

What I appreciate about this wine is its balanced structure, pleasant acidity and fresh crispy taste. In comparison to many vinhos verdes, I would call this one neither sweetish nor too sparkling. It’s made from Loureiro and Trajadura grapes, not Alvarinho, and the result is delicate and very satisfying.


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