Like the westerly trade winds that give ‘Vento do Oeste’ its name, this wine both affirms historic ties between the island of Madeira and America and elaborates upon them: Where pipes (casks) of madeira once sailed to the American colonies, bourbon barrels are now routinely shipped from Kentucky to the island for ‘finishing’ before traveling further along modern trade routes to distilleries worldwide. Made with Tinta Negra, Saveiro ‘Vento do Oeste’ Meio Doce (‘Medium-Rich’) is bourbon barrel-finished madeira, the first of its kind off the island, aged for three years in a traditional manner before finishing an additional 12 to 18 months in used bourbon barrels.
About Tinta NegraFormerly known as Tinta Negra Mole, Tinta Negra is by far the most widely planted grape on the island, accounting for more than 85% of the total hectares planted (485 ha). Long-prized by growers for its generous yields and adaptability to a wide array of growing conditions, and by winemakers for its chameleon-like expression, producing wines ranging from seco to doce. It forms the basis of all entry-level madeiras which undergo estufagem, but in recent decades winemakers have sought to explore and elevate this ‘workhorse grape’, and it was included in ‘Recommended Varieties’ (castas recomendadas) in 2015, for the first time permitting its name to appear on madeira labels. H&H (with several other producers) has been in the vanguard of its reassessment, producing three colheitas and the island’s first 50-Year Tinta Negra.
Tasting NotesTestament to its unique elevage, Saveiro ‘Vento do Oeste’ Meio Doce (‘Medium-Rich’) is a fascinating character study—akin to a foreign exchange student returning home after a formative year abroad. Notes and flavors of sorghum, French-burnt peanut, dry vanillin, roasted orange, and rancio-tinged baking spices are set against a backdrop of smoky/sweet, slightly funky bourbon barrel. A hallmark of many Henriques & Henriques wines, the acidity is thoroughly integrated, providing clarity and lift throughout; the time in bourbon barrel lending not only nuanced flavors but subtle tannins to augment that acidity—a new framework of expression. It does all of this with nonchalance and playful insouciance, still unmistakably *Madeirense*.
Pairing RecommendationsDelicious on its own, Saveiro ‘Vento do Oeste’ pairs well with roasted nuts; with cheddars and blue-veined cheeses; and with a wide variety of desserts, including crème brûlée, cheesecake, even dark chocolate. Behind the bar, serve ‘cobbler-style’ with crushed ice and fruit; lend dimension to sangarees, punches, and flips; and mix with all manner of brown spirits to enlivening effect.
Saveiro ‘Vento do Oeste’ Madeira is produced for Haus Alpenz/Sotolon Selections by Humberto Jardim, owner and winemaker of Henriques & Henriques. Based in historic Camâra de Lobos, H&H is one of the most esteemed and storied producers on the island. Full details
About Madeira DOCThe archipelago of Madeira has long profited from its position in shipping lanes, from the 1500s, when ships under sail called at Funchal to pick up food and wine before the trade winds blew their ships west to the New World, to today, when cruise ships dock and world travelers sample the foods, crafts, and wines of the island. The Madeira DOC governs the fortified and heated-to-oxidation wines of the island, regulating the grapes, minimum age, and residual sugars of each category. While the Madeira laws give producers plenty of leeway in terms of blending and age statements, Henriques & Henriques’ blending approach is crystal clear—true minimum age statements and only monovarietal wines.
|SKU||Vintage||Region||Origin||Desc||Cepage||% Alc||Size/Pack||Finish||BTL Barcode||Cs Barcode||Cs Wgt|
|HZ 6600||NV||Madeira||PT||Oxidative/Oxidized Wine; Fortified||Tinta Negra||19%||750/12||cork||5601196010764||20850566008002|