Monday, May 13, 2019

Rant: Wine Less Than $10? Buy Portuguese

Want to buy a good wine costing less than $10? You can certainly find a bottle from Barefoot Cellars or Yellow Tail, but I think there's a better option.

Buy Portuguese wine! 

On a recent trek to Fall River, I was once again reminded of the great value that can be found in wines from Portugal. I attended a Portuguese wine dinner, at Terra Nostra restaurant, held by LGL Imports and Enoport United Wines. LGL Imports is a family owned company that was established in 1977, and began importing Portuguese wines and spirits in 1979. Over the years, I've become friends with some of the people at LGL Imports, including Luis Oliveira, whose father started the company. I've tasted many of the wines they import, often impressed with the low price points of many of their wines. A number of those wines have ended up on my yearly Top Ten lists.

Every year, imports of Portuguese wines to the U.S. grow, which is also currently Portugal's second largest market. About 50% of those imports are Vinho Verde, generally white wines with a touch of effervescence that are perfect for the summer and are excellent food wines too. You can find plenty of tasty Vinho Verde wines for under $10. Portugal also offers numerous red wines, many produced from indigenous grapes, priced under $10, as well as other sub-$10 white wines. Plenty of diversity at this low price point.

As I've said before, there is probably no other wine region in the world where you can find as many good wines under $10 than Portugal. You may find some in other wine regions, but they are far less common, and you'll have to seek much harder to locate them. Chances are that if you purchase a Portuguese wine costing $10 or less, you'll find a tasty wine, much better than similarly priced wines from most other regions. Wines from Barefoot and Yellow Tail might be inexpensive and enjoyed by numerous people, but they aren't going to impress anyone.

However, Portuguese wines, even under $10, can impress. I previously held a private wine tasting event, with six wines from different countries. The overall favorite wine, which most impressed the guests and earned hearty raves, was a $6 Portuguese Vinho Verde! At that price, it would be easy to pick up a case to ensure you always have a bottle on hand. I've witnessed plenty of other people being amazed by the quality of a sub-$10 Portuguese wine. As have I.

Portugal has excellent wines at all price points, but they are certainly champions of wines under $10. As summer approaches, and you want to stock up on inexpensive wines for your parties, BBQs, and gatherings, then you should seek out Portuguese wines.

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