A small area at the heart of the Quinta do Noval vineyard planted with ungrafted vines and untouched by phylloxera. The word "Nacional" refers to the fact that the vines are Portuguese vines growing in Portuguese soil with no foreign root stock, and are therefore "attached to the soil of the Nation". This great wine is a source of pride to the people of Portugal, and at its best the finest expression of the extraordinary terroir of Quinta do Noval.
The Nacional is a unique and extraordinary phenomenon. It does not necessarily follow the same rhythm as the rest of the Quinta do Noval. In some years a great Nacional is produced when Noval does not even declare the Quinta do Noval Vintage. In others, Quinta do Noval makes a great Vintage Port, and the Nacional does not perform.
2016 was a year of extremes: a warm winter with high rainfall, at 618 mm twice as much as in an average year. After a wet spring, summer was very hot and dry, with some peaks of heat in August and September.
By the end of August, the harvest looked extremely good, in excellent sanitary condition, but ripening began to slow down due to the very hot and dry conditions.
Fortunately 17 mm of much needed rain fell on 13th September, and maturation continued in ideal conditions from this point onwards. The main part of the harvest began on 19th September in dry and sunny weather, and the fruit continued to ripen throughout the harvest period. We were able to harvest each plot in ideal conditions as ripening continued.
In spite of the unusual and extreme climatic conditions of the year, the end result is of an excellent quality. The wines are balanced and fresh, with great structure, very intense bright fruit and aromatically very expressive. The Nacional as usual has a personality all of its own, considerably more reserved than the Quinta do Noval, with a brooding powerful tannic structure that promises very long and great ageing potential.
It is produced using several grape varieties and not just from Touriga Nacional, as it name might suggest. These varieties are some of the noblest to be found in the Douro valley: Touriga Franca, Tinto Cão, Touriga Nacional, Sousão and Tinta Roriz.
The wine is made in the same way as all the other grapes from the Quinta do Noval vineyard. Grapes are trodden by foot to obtain the must, then during fermentation macerate to obtain the best possible extraction in the lagares, the traditional stone vats from the Quinta.
It was matured for 18 months in wooden barrels in the air- conditioned cellars of the Quinta, at the demarcated region of the Douro Valley before bottling.
Alcohol: 19,5 % vol
Total sugar: 85g/dm3
Total Acidity: 4,96g/dm3