Douro Superior - Portugal
The 2017 Contraste Tinto is a field blend mostly (80%) from 40-year-old vines with Touriga Franca, Touriga Nacional and Tinta Roriz comprising the last 20% combined (from 60-year-old vines). It was aged for 16 months in used French oak and comes in at 14% alcohol. Fresh, pointed and subtly concentrated, this is fruit forward, but it also shows good concentration and fine focus. In this big vintage, here is another red that seems fresh rather than jammy and overripe, a sign of how well producers handled strange conditions. There are ripe tannins for support and a lovely, dry finish. This is still a bit tight, but you can drink it now. It is worth leaning up for the moment, as the fruit is great—and that's the aim with this bottling these days. I'm less sure it will be this good for all of its useful life.
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