2020 Azores Wine Co. "Vinha Dos Utras" Branco, Azores, Portugal

Yellow citrus-straw color, iodine flavor, salt, linden. In the mouth there is a concentrated dense attack, with bright acidity that cuts in the middle and persists. The finish shows salt and iodine, like a "slap" of the sea. A wine born in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean performs beautifully with all sorts of seafood, owing to its salinity and minerality. It is also a great match to suckling pig and pork belly.


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95% Arinto dos Açores with the remainder comprised of a field blend of indigenous white grapes. For more than 500 years, vines on this island have been planted in the cracks of the lava bed, a few meters from the ocean. But before the vineyards there were the “Utras”, a name that derives from Joss Hurtere, a Flemish seafarer that arrived in 1465 and became Captain of Pico and Fayal. His role was crucial in the development of the islands and vineyards. This vineyard was given to Azores Wine Company by the descendants of this family with the responsibility of its continuation. This small plot is planted the closest to the ocean possible, where you can get the maximum of sunlight exposure and concentration. Grapes are hand-picked and head to the sorting table, then direct press, decanted for 12 hours in cold. First press (70%) is fermented and aged in stainless steel in horizontal tanks, and the second press (30%) is fermented and aged in 3-year French oak barrels without batonnage for 9 months


The story of this exceptional wine begins with António, who co-founded FitaPreta Vinhos in sunny Alentejo before embarking on the adventure of the Azores Wine Company. His connection to the Azores runs deep, as his father's homeland and his many childhood trips to the islands inspired him to take on the challenge of reviving the indigenous Terrantez do Pico varietal with his two partners.

Arinto dos Açores is a grape variety indigenous to the Azores that shares the acidity and potential for longevity of the mainland variety that shares its name. However, the two are not related. The grape variety's characteristics, coupled with Pico’s unique terroir, impart incredible minerality, purity and unmistakable salinity to the wine.

The Portuguese archipelago of the Azores is home to a winemaking tradition that dates back to its colonization in the 15th century, wherein Franciscan friars introduced viticulture. This group of islands is home to a singular terroir and microclimate, which draws a close comparison to the island of Santorini. Like Santorini, the Azores are volcanic islands comprised entirely of black basalt. Pico, the main wine-producing island where these vineyards are located, has such poor soil that the vineyard needs to be supplemented with soil from neighboring islands to support vine growth, and even with that, the yields are a fraction of what they are in the rest of the DOC. Additionally, the vineyards are grown in tiny plots (2-6 bush-trained vines per square) protected on all sides by small walls called “currais” to ward off the strong winds that blow in from the North Atlantic, mere steps from the vineyards. At its peak, Pico was home to over 6,000 ha of vineyards. These are still there today but are mainly grown over by forests – only a handful of small family-owned vineyards remain outside the production of 3 leading producers. Azores Wine Company is the clear leader at 116 hA of recovered vines.


Grape(s) Arinto dos Açores
Farming Sustainable