Alianca Vinho Verde 2018
Pop! Goes the Vinho Verde!
Yep, that’s right, every bottle of this Vinho Verde will give a little pop as you open it. It’s not quite Prosecco, and it ain’t Champagne, but it is utterly, refreshingly spritzy and delightfully easy to drink. This is Vinho Verde.
It’s the light, bright-flavored, slightly fizzy wine from the northwest corner of Portugal. Of course, Portugal is more famous for Port, but hey, it gets hot in Portugal and they, just like us, need something cold to drink during the mid-afternoon heat (and evening, and morning heat, too).
Hence, Vinho Verde. It literally means “green wine,” a reference to its youthful nature and refreshment. It’s usually bottled with a slight amount of C02, giving it just a little kiss of bubbles. While its grapes may be unknown to you – it’s usually made with Alvarinho, Loureiro, Trajadura and Arinto – its flavors are not.
Think of Sauvignon Blanc with a little spritz. Or think of spritely lemon- and lime-flavored mineral water with a hint of mint and basil and a touch of alcohol.
Either way, it’s the perfect summertime pounder. And I mean pounder. In Portugal, I have seen manos take down six bottles by lunchtime (not that you need to do this, but it’s certainly fun to try). Here’s why:
The Alianca Vinho Verde leaps from the glass with fresh pineapple aromas, followed up with citrus notes of lemon zest, squeezed key limes and kaffir. It’s vivacious and clean on the palate, making it oh so clean and easy to drink and perfect to pair with summer foods – be it grilled chicken and basil-apple salad or shrimp with papaya salsa – or a simple course of cheeses. It is just slightly spritzy and low in alcohol so it goes down easy and briskly. Delicios!
So let’s hope we get some pure sunshine this Memorial Day and have a party outside, all day long. À sua saúde!