Over the last few years an increasing number of Port Houses in the Douro region have started to produce non-fortified wines. Christian Seely, our Managing Director, is convinced that the Douro valley is one of the world’s greatest wine-producing areas; its superb Port wines certainly give full expression to the terroir – which is also perfectly reflected in the entirely different character of its non-fortified wines.
Although we wanted to make Douro red wines for many years it was only in 2004 that we considered our non-fortified wines worthy of the Quinta do Noval name. It was not just a question of grape quality and precision in blending, but also of quantity: we had to be able to produce enough high quality fruit to sustain this range of red wines. We were able to achieve our goal thanks to the long and ambitious vineyard replanting programme which we began in 1994.
Our winemaking philosophy remains unchanged in making these Douro wines. Just like our Ports, our Douro red wines must reflect the exceptional terroir from which they originate by giving a taste of the character of this wild and challenging valley.
Cedro do Noval, of which the 2010 vintage is now available, clearly embodies our philosophy. Its name is a tribute to the hundred-year-old cedar which overlooks the Quinta’s terrace and the wine’s aromas exude all the magic of the harsh yet magnificent landscapes of the Douro. Considering their recent emergence, Douro wines have already established a very strong reputation and have rapidly captured the attention of wine lovers the world over.