The Encruzado variety

The Encruzado variety

The Encruzado Variety

Encruzado is one of our favorite Portuguese grape varieties, but without a doubt it is also one of the favorite varieties of all wine lovers, in Portugal and elsewhere. Encruzado combines an excellent volume in the mouth, with elegant aromas and flavors of flowers and fruit, and a perfect acidity. This caste is originally from the Dão region and it is in the Dão region that it is most planted, but some acres can also be found in the Bairrada region.

In terms of viticulture, Encruzado produces medium sized and vigorous berries that tend to ripen early. In the winery this variety requires special care because it can oxidize quickly and damage the aromas. The aromas are citrus and mineral, of stone, but also floral, rose and violet, and as it ages it gains aromas of hazelnut and resin. The wines from the Encruzado variety resemble Burgundy whites when fermenting in oak barrels and when in contact with the fine lees. The best productions of this variety age very well in bottle for decades, however most production is for medium to short term consumption. Although on its own it creates fantastic wines, Encruzado is often blended with other indigenous varieties such as Bical, Cercial, or Malvasia Fina to create complex and well-balanced wines.

Finally, the Encruzado grape variety is known for producing full-bodied, rich, creamy mouthfeel wines that are balanced by refreshing acidity. The wine’s flavors have citrus (bergamot), tropical and stone fruit characteristics, as well as a distinct minerality that reflects well on the granite soils of the Dão. One of the key factors that makes Encruzado such a unique variety is its ability to express the terroir of the vineyards in which it is grown, this variety is particularly sensitive to soil and climate characteristics, meaning that the wine it produces can vary significantly depending on the specific location in which it is grown.

Text written with precious information from the book Wine Grapes, Guide 1368 wine varieties, Jancis Robinson, Julia Harding, José Vouillamoz

At Touriga Vinhos de Portugal you can find magnificent examples of this grape variety.


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