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Duorum launches its first white vintage

The first Tons de Duorum white wine from Portugal has been introduced into the UK market.

The 2010 vintage follows on from the success of the Tons de Duorum 2009 red wine, launched last year. These wines are the result of Duorum – a project set up in 2007 in the Douro by two Portuguese winemakers, João Portugal Ramos and José Maria Soares Franco, with the aim of producing the highest quality wines from high altitude (400 – 600m) vineyards planted on some of the best terroir in the region. They planted over 150 hectares of vines with carefully selected varieties of indigenous grapes.

The 2010 vintage of the Tons de Duorum white is a blend of indigenous grape varieties Viosinho (30%), Rabigato (30%), Verdelho (20%) and Arinto (20%). It has an intense aroma that is dominated by tropical and citrus fruits, as well as crystallized fruit, and also has floral and mineral notes which contribute to its complexity.

To maximize the finesse of the wine, the oenologists adopt a natural winemaking focus using indigenous yeasts and making no chemical corrections. This is common practice within the Duorum project as it allows the grapes to reach their full potential in terms of quality. The grapes used are exclusively Portuguese varieties, which give the wines, and the Duorum project, a strong native identity.

A key aspect of Duorum is that the ultimate balance is achieved in the wines by growing the same variety in different locations, with varying exposures and altitudes. Careful blending is then carried out with the mature, concentrated grapes and the fresher, more elegant ones from higher altitudes. In addition to this high level of blending expertise, a cold pre-fermentation maceration also takes place. The wine is kept in lagares at cold temperatures for a couple of days before initiating fermentation, resulting in a very smooth and selective extraction without alcohol at this stage. Finally, again so that the wine that leaves the winery is at its optimum level, batches are tasted three times a day to ensure that everything is progressing as desired and the end result will be as planned.

The Tons de Duorum 2010 has already gained listings in Avery’s, Harrod’s, The Sampler, The Real Wine Company, Tanners and various independents around the country and has been named in the national press as ‘a floral, ultra-refreshing Portuguese winner.”

The UK launch of the Tons de Duorum wines follows on from being successfully introduced into its home market as well as Brazil, the US, Canada, Switzerland, Sweden, Belgium, Denmark, Germany Austria and Ireland.

About the winemakers
João Portugal Ramos started work as an oenologist in the Alentejo in 1980. By the end of the 1980s he had established Consulvinus with which he worked with producers from all over the country. In 1990 he planted vineyards in Estremoz and, over the next decade, the wines became a great success. In the meantime, Jose Maria Soares started working at A.A. Ferreira in 1979, working with Fernando Nicolau de Almeida, the famed creator of the first Barca Velha in 1952. When he took over the management of Oenology in 1987 he became responsible for some of the most respected brands of Douro and Porto wine. He soon became seen as being an integral part of the viticultural and oenological restructuring in the Douro region. In 2007, the pair joined forces to set up this exciting and innovative venture – Duorum.

1 August 2011 - Felicity Murray