RKS Wine: Quinta do Bom Retiro in The Douro: Bright Eyed and Bushy Tailed!

If my memory serves me correct I flew to Porto from Toronto in November 2014 on my very first European media tour. I was travelling with B a writer freelancing for a major Canadian newspaper. From the airport we were picked by our driver Mr. Antonio and guide L from the Instituto dos Vinhos do Douro e do Porto and off to the Douro to Quinta do Bom Retiro a Ramos Pinto estate. Never having been on such a trip I wondered what I was doing in Portugal! I suppose I had to fly by the seat of my pants for 5 jam packed days of predominately Port tastings. Now that I had perhaps 3 glasses of Port in my life you may say the stress and uncertainty was high. I wrote 12 articles on that trip. A winery shows me hospitality it is my obligation to repay it.

Our first stop if I recall was Quinta do Bom Retiro. Quinta is Portuguese for farm but most of the Quintas I have visited are more akin to a Chateau. The road to the Quinta off the main road was narrow and a mistake would send you plunging to your death. I recall there was a large group welcoming two Canadian journalists. We had a splendid dinner and Ports and table wines were awaiting us. I did my best to avoid my exhausted head from plopping into the fine cut of ox on my plate and at 9 p.m. I begged off and had a tremendous sleep as becomes one who hasn’t slept in countless hours.

From a Newbie to a knight in the Order of Port Brotherhood!

Bottom line is that I have a soft spot in my heart for Ramos Pinto! So I see a Ramos Pinto wine “Duas Quintas” a happy light went on in my brain of days past.

The nose is crammed with a solid arsenal of black fruit particularly black cherry and blackberry. One immediately gets the impression this is a wine that takes no prisoners. Tannins are moderate and broad based. There is a bit of a chalky overtone with a bit of hot spice lingering in its finish. Again a cascade of black fruit. A strong willed and impetuous wine that is neither elegant or delicate but it is no monster. It certainly would suit a nice, rare slab of ox or Euro beef. A classic Douro wine that could use until 2024 to be a real cutie and ready to wink at you!

A blend of Touriga Nacional and Touriga Franca.

(Duas Quintas 2018 Ramos Pinto, Vinho Tinto, DOC Douro, Ramos Pinto, Villa Nova de Gaia, Portugal, $19.95, Liquor Control Board of Ontario # 359893, 750 mL, 14%, RKS Wine Rating 91/100).

Published by Robert K Stephen (CSW)

Robert K Stephen writes about food and drink, travel, and lifestyle issues. He is one of the few non-national writers to be certified as a wine specialist by the Society of Wine Educators, in Washington, DC. Robert was the first associate member of the Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada. He also holds a Mindfulness Certification from the University of Leiden and the University of Toronto. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he has established this publication. His motto is, "Have Story, Will Write."

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