Wine

Avesso. Inside out Vinho Verde.

The slopes get steeper, and the roads get harder to drive, going around the houses decorated with pergola vines, so typical of this region. Down the hill sits Douro River. We are in Santa Marinha do Zêzere, Baião, the southeast limit of the DOC Vinho Verde. But here everything is different.

The climate is extreme. Scorching summers and cold winters, always with significant day to night temperature amplitude. Dryer weather, with much less precipitation, and poor soils composed mostly of granite. These are the inside out Vinho Verde’s, a kind of reversed conditions and wines of the remaining region. It’s also Avesso’s land. In here we have the terroir of excellence for the evolution of the most intriguing – if not the most exciting – white wine variety of the region. And the name of it is really Avesso (“inside out” is the literal translation to English), because it’s hard to manipulate from the vineyard to the cellar.

 

 

Avesso enjoys a more continental climate, warm. It can originate structured wines, with fuller body, with great alcohol concentration – here you understand why I say it is the inside out, or the reverse, of Vinho Verde – but when harvested at the right moment it keeps an extraordinary acidity, allowing a great ageing potential, with character and uniqueness because of the varietal typicity  and region, as it isn’t planted anywhere else (this variety doesn’t travel much outside of Baião).

 

 

There are some producers doing an interesting work with Avesso – Covela, for example – but the variety is mostly unknown to consumers. And it might be one more revelation from Vinho Verde Region. It is precisely this conviction that led to a personal bet together with Vasco Magalhães, André Miranda and Carlos Coutinho, of creating an exclusive project around this variety, anchored in the brand Cazas Novas.

 

 

The name, Cazas Novas, originates in the family property of Carlos Coutinho, a property pristinely maintained by the family in Santa Marinha do Zêzere. Among four properties, marked by stately homes, they have the largest area planted with Avesso on its best terroir the sub region of Baião. It is a total of 24ha of older vines and newer ones. A relic that we have been testing for the last few years and from where we will have several expressions of Avesso, different plots, distinct vinifications, with and without oak fermentations, this way contributing to the valorisation of the grape variety and the region.

 

 

This is a Vinho Verde with difficult viticulture, almost like Douro valley, on patamares, where we can get serious white wines, more direct and with greater complexity. This summer, the project Cazas Novas gives a further step in the interpretation of this grape variety with the launching of two new wines 100% Avesso of the 2019 harvest: one colheita full of aromatic intensity, freshness and minerality; and a Pure with more complexity, potentiating the full expresiion of Avesso’s identity, balancing aromas, acidity and creaminess.

 

Two new wines looking forward for Summer and the future of this grape variety.

Of Avesso!!