Brand Collection

João Paulo Martins tastes Portos e Douros DOC from the VWSA brand collection

7/8/2024

Text: João Paulo Martins Photos: Van Zeller Wine Collection, S.A.

The tastings took place in the Vilariça winery and the technical team took the opportunity to revisit older vintages of some brands. The portfolio is so broad that it would be impossible to taste all the wines here. Of those we tasted, here are some notes and impressions. The tasting covered the group's various brands. We started with the Kaputt collection of wines, a brand that was born occasionally, when it was necessary to find a name for a wine that brought together batches from various vintages; it began with a white edition, of which we leave here a note on the 2nd edition. The first was bottled in 2016 and 2645 bottles were made at the time. Tasting it now shows that it's still in excellent shape, with a light gunpowder aroma and even distant notes reminiscent of Sauternes. It's a pleasure to drink and, curiously, at a slightly higher level than the 2nd edition. It could now cost €70. Every year they try Kaputt in both white and Orange. They're leaving whites in reserve to see what happens. They taste it twice a year to see how it's evolving. New editions can be expected in the future. The Zom brand does not correspond to the vineyards of the Zom estate. For now, it's just a name and it covers three levels of wines: the Colecção (top of the range), Grande Reserva and Reserva, Garrafeira and generics. We did an extensive tasting of this range, leaving out the white Reserva and the rosé. The red Reserva (15,000 bottles/year) and the Grande Reserva have already been tasted in various editions of Grandes Escolhas; this is the case with the Grande Reserva 2017, which, when tasted now, has shown itself very well, still full of small, high-quality aromatic nuances. The market price is now around €30. We tasted the first edition of the Garrafeira but, we're told, it will continue for years to come. The Zom Colecção reds - presented in an original shaped bottle designed together with Martin Berasategui - will only be released in years considered to be of a very high standard, with productions of between 3,500 and 5,000 bottles. In addition to the two mentioned here, we also tasted the Zom Colecção 2009, which is now at its zenith, at its best, with all the elements giving a very good account of themselves. The record is one of elegance, but it's giving us signs that it still has arguments to keep it in the cellar.

The Reserva range is much more accessible in terms of price, with remarkable quality. It was to show this that we tasted two older editions which confirmed the suitability of these wines for life in the cellar. The company's range of Port wines is made up of several brands (the best known being Barão de Vilar), some aimed mainly at foreign markets - as is the case with Feuerheerd's, a brand acquired from the Barros family - others more geared towards a strong presence on the domestic market, such as Maynard's and a more discreet one, which includes some of the top of the range, with the Palmer brand, only aimed at the HORECA channel. The finest wines will come out under the Palmer brand, both Colheita and Vintage. Maynard's, although from the same years, will continue to have Port wines but from different blends, at a different price level.

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Barão de VilarZOMFeueheerdMaynardQuinta da VilarissaPalmer

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