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Wine and Soul, Quinta da Manoella Vinhas Velhas

$89.99

The Quinta da Manoella Vinhas Velhas (the “old vines” are centenary vines) is a field blend aged for 20 months in 30% new French oak. It comes in at 14% alcohol. This was not quite bottled when I sampled the final blend out of barrel and tank. This looks like one of the best—if not the best—Manoellas ever. It feels far less full in the mouth than Pintas or perhaps even Character, and no more so than the regular Manoella, but density is not how this wine usually makes it case. It is always very elegant with fine mid-palate finesse. It also may have the most gloriously flavorful fruit of any of them. Typical of the vintage and its own style, it is never sweet or flabby but always lifted, energetic and fresh. It is pretty wonderful and hard to resist, but this does have power and really needs some cellaring, at least to 2020 and maybe more. Sure, you could try some if you wish, but it’s not exactly a mass market wine (only 4,000 bottles produced) and it will hurt to waste it. It should age and develop beautifully in the cellar, too. It may actually age better than indicated, but let’s be conservative just now. This looks like a big winner.   www.robertparker.com

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