Morais Rocha Wines
Some people are quite something. Some people have a standout personality, whose character leaves its own particular mark on us. Such was the case with José Morais Rocha. I met him in 2010 through a shared acquaintance. An immediate empathy flourished between us. It is quite easy to like José, such is his character, his unashamedly proud alentejano figure and his love of the land. Even if his professional career in business management somehow derailed him to Lisbon.
Well, José used to talk to me about a “small winery” he had back in Vidigueira, where his family is from. He also used to talk to me about his “piquettes” and one day invited me to come over and sniff around or, in other words, to have a look around. I accepted the invitation, of course, and travelled with great enthusiasm. I was fully aware of the value of the Alentejo and particularly of the Vidigueira sub-region bringing perfect conditions and a renowned status to the table.
This visit couldn’t have gone wrong. The project was just the right size for the goals that had been set: an attempt at distinctiveness, producing genuinely alentejano wines with a hint of modernity to broaden the horizon. The vineyard itself had been planted in quite an interesting fashion, combining traditional varieties such as Antão Vaz, Verdelho, Arinto, Aragonez and Trincadeira with international grapes such as Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon allowing for tremendous potential. We immediately rolled up our sleeves and that same year I started providing technical support for the project. It was back in 2010.
Busy travelling to Lisbon and the world, from 2014 onwards José was fortunate enough to count on the support of his daughter Ana Rocha. Equally passionate about Vidigueira, she took charge and fueled the project with the kind of enthusiasm that sets her apart.
Those familiar with Ana will know she wants things done. Some new ideas came up, namely regarding marketing, communication, image and events, so we adapted the wine range accordingly. Morais Rocha Reserva, an astounding red wine, left us looking at the future with unrestrained optimism. We have both the perfect raw materials at our disposal and the perfect team to help us achieve our goals.
I am a firm believer in the unique conditions of the Vidigueira region. White wines from this region are some of the very best produced in the southern part of the country. This is mainly due to the extraordinary performance of the Antão Vaz variety. Red wines, on the other hand, allow for a mix of potency and elegance. Finding the right balance can prove hard. We’ll have more Vidigueira news coming your way soon. Stay tuned!