Fault Line Vineyards, Umpqua Valley, Southern Oregon, Oregon
111 cases produced
Red grape Tinta amarela, pronounced teen-TAH ah-MAH-reh-lah, is also known as Trincedeira (treen-cah-DAY-rah), and is widely planted in the country of Portugal. Often used to make port wine, these grapes have thin skins, making them very susceptible to rot and disease. The vines grow best in warm, sunny locations, like Abacela’s Fault Line Vineyard, found in a hot spot of the Umpqua Valley.
Abacela owners Hilda and Earl Jones did an enormous amount of climate research before settling on their 400+ acre parcel near Roseburg, Oregon over 25 years ago. Immediately, they began experimenting with Iberian grape varietals, none previously planted in the state, and some became the very first plantings in the nation. You may know Abacela as a champion of Tempranillo but they have so much more to offer wine lovers.
In 2010, the Jones’ chose to plant the first US Tinta amarela grapevines– and after finding it thrived on the property– they planted more! At first, they combined these grapes with others and bottled a red blend but eventually decided the quality of the fruit merited a single varietal bottling…. which leads us to today’s 2016 Tinta amarela.
Inky blackberry in color, this wine is completely opaque in the glass.
This Tinta amarela has an interesting bouquet of fruit, earth, and floral notes, including blueberries, eucalyptus, violets, and fresh black soil. It has port-like aromas layered with gravel dust and chocolate.
Name a black fruit and it’s in this wine! Blackberries, black plums, black cherries, black raspberries, yup, they all showed up for this Tinta amarela party! I am amazed by the texture and heft in this wine. I also love the ripe blueberries, crushed mint and bourbon-soaked cherries. Do yourself a favor and order some from the Abacela website today.
Food pairing suggestions:
Cornish game hen, beef empanadas, cheese and charcuterie plate, mushroom risotto.
Michele Francisco, a founder and regular contributor to Winerabble, a blog primarily about Pacific Northwest wines, is living the dream in Portland, Oregon. Her passion leads some to believe she's got wine running through her veins. Contact Michele at firstname.lastname@example.org & be sure to visit her online portfolio at www.michelefrancisco.com.