7 Facts About Vinho Verde Wine
1) It comes from Portugal
Vinho Verde is a Portuguese wine that originates in the northern part of Portugal in the Minho Province. Bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the west, you will also find the mountain ranges to the east, the Minho River to the north, and the Douro River to the south. They say grapes have grown in this region since 800 a.d. It is the largest DOC in Portugal and has many different sub-regions. These sub-regions include Amarante, Ave, Baião, Basto, Cávado, Lima, Monção e Melgaço, Paiva, and Sousa.
2) It's not green
Even though Vinho Verde quite literally translates to green wine, it’s not green in color. It is typically white wine, occasionally red or rosé; however, those options are harder to come by. You are probably left wondering why the translation doesn't translate. It's not the physical color we're talking about. It's young, and in this case, green means young. It's a young wine that is hardly aged at all. And to take this a step further, they say the name comes from where it's made, amid dense greenery and vegetation that contributes to the freshness of the wine.
3) How does it taste?
The white commonly has notes of melon, lemon, and pear. It is dry, crisp in flavor, and higher in acidity. You can expect some tart, bitter notes.
The red is fresh and full-bodied and usually has notes of blackberry and raspberry. The overall taste is very earthy.
The rosé is fresh and fruity with notes of berries, commonly strawberries or raspberries.
The red and the rosé are typically harder to find. If you happen to find yourself in Portugal, I recommend trying both where they are easier to come by.
4) It’s low alcohol
Vinho Verde wine is typically lower in alcohol. For reference, the typical bottle of red wine usually falls between 12% to 15%. A bottle of Vinho Verde is typically 8% to 12%.
Broadbent Vinho Verde has an alcohol content of 9%.
5) Drink it young
Because Vinho Verde Wine is released just 3 to 6 months after the harvest, it is best to enjoy it quickly to maintain the freshness of the fruit.
It also tastes best chilled, but never with ice cubes, although, if you find yourself outdoors in the heat, it's best to keep the bottle in a bucket of ice.
6) It’s fizzy
That’s right, it’s fizzy and it’s not always natural. The fermentation process usually adds fizz to the wines naturally; however, some winemakers provide the Vinho Verde wines with an extra boost of carbon dioxide to give the wine some extra fizz. It is not always the case, but more often than not, they are artificially carbonated.
You may even find some bottles that have no fizz at all. It all depends on the winemaker and the location.
7) It’s a real hit alongside seafood
The classic white Vinho Verde pairs exceptionally well alongside seafood. This shouldn’t surprise you. After all, Portugal is a dream destination for seafood lovers. Whether it’s fried or grilled fish, a white Vinho Verde will be great with it. It also pairs well with sushi, spicy dishes, and sweet and sour dishes.
The rosé Vinho Verde does well with light meals. It pairs well with fresh fruit, cheeses, and light dishes. If you're having shellfish or white meat, pair it with the rosé.
The red Vinho Verde is most enjoyed with the regional cuisine. If you’re enjoying a classic Portuguese dish, the red will be a hit. If you're having sardines, pair it with the red.
If you’re looking for some options, try Broadbent Vinho Verde, Jm. Fonseca Twin Vines Vinho Verde DOC 2020, and J Portugal Ramos Loureiro Vinho Verde 2020!