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H&H Terrantez Madeira 1954
About TerrantezFor its most ardent admirers, Terrantez is the sin qua non of madeira wine. With just over 2 hectares planted on the island—1.3 ha of which are in H&H’s vineyard at Preçes, Ribeira de Caixa—it is also rarest of Madeira's noble varieties: notoriously difficult to grow, low-yielding, favoring sites near the sea where vineyards have given way to hotels. Production is reserved entirely for expensive garrafeira/frasqueira (vintage) essays—H&H is the only firm able to offer an age-statement expression—giving wines that range from meio seco to meio doce and boast autumnal flavors of smoked meat, honey seed cake, chestnut and tobacco leaf allied to debonair, rakish demeanor.
Tasting NotesMedium-dark brown with a tiny hint of garnet. Explodes on the nose, with blood orange, hot bricks, bitter orange, overripe banana, and plenty of lift. Spectacular texture, creamy but with little hint of sweetness, pumping out flavors of dark citrus, salty toffee, very fine oolong, and turning a tiny bit sweeter toward the back, with the characteristic citrus tang of the variety. A pleasing and energizing bitterness frames the finish, which is endless and citric, with some characteristics of greengages and highland Scotch. Tremendous.
About Henriques & Henriques
It might be said that the history of Henriques & Henriques is the history of Madeira itself. Legend has it that Infante Dom Henriques planted the island’s first vines in 1425. These vines gave fruit to one of the “first families of Madeira” and in the process sunk deep roots which Henriques’ descendants and successors continue to draw upon in guiding H&H today.
João Joaquim Gonçalves Henriques founded the firm in 1850 as a partidista, supplying wine to other merchants from extensive Henriques vineyard holdings while continuing to amass significant stocks of old wines in the family cellars. In 1925, Henriques & Henriques began to bottle and export Madeira produced entirely from their own vineyards—an anomaly amongst producers on the island. Today, Henriques & Henriques is led by CEO and winemaker Humberto Jardim, one of Madeira’s great visionaries and ambassadors. The firm continues to source some of its needs from its own vineyards, most notably from a terraced, 10-hectare vineyard at Quinta Grande—the single largest on island, replanted in 1995.
Against the tides of urban development, H&H have been in the forefront of vineyard planting and preservation of Madeira’s noble varieties: Sercial, Verdelho, Boal, Malvasia and Terrantez, while simultaneously playing a key role in the reappraisal of the underrated Tinta Negra, recently releasing an unprecedented 50-year expression. Likewise, H&H’s age-statement varietal wines are widely regarded as benchmark articulations: always 100% of the stated varietal (e.g., Verdelho), the blend always composed of stocks well in excess of the statement requirement (e.g., 15-year).
Finally, H&H continues to boast an impressive selection of pre-1925 “Garrafeira” (vintage) and Solera bottlings originating in the Henriques’ family cellars. Without question, the most celebrated of these is the “Heavenly Quartet”—four legendary wines from the late 18th century—that are amongst the most transcendent expressions of Madeira extant today. To taste any one of these is, quite literally, to “drink history” itself, as well as to share in the accumulated wisdom—of family, family-owned vineyards and old stocks—that continue to define Henriques & Henriques today. 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.
|Terrain/Climate||mountainous; subtropical but highly varied|
|Soil Type||mixed volcanic (basalt, tufa)|
|Vine Training||espaldeira (espalier) & latada (pergola)|
|Harvest||late September to early October; hand-harvested|
|Fermentation||whole-cluster; skin maceration; fermented in lagares with native yeasts|
|Fortification||traditional agurardente de cana (70% abv)|
|Elevage||in canteiro and demi-john for 53 years; bottled in 2008|
|Total acidity||7.9 g/l|
|Total extract||164.1 g/l|
|SKU||Vintage||Region||Origin||Desc||Cepage||% Alc||Size/Pack||Finish||BTL Barcode||Cs Barcode||Cs Wgt|
|HZ 6573-1954||1954||Madeira||PT||Oxidative/Oxidized Wine; Fortified||100% Terrantez||20.0%||750/6||cork||5601196011181||45601196011189||8.50 kg|