Conceito Branco 2015. By Jethro Kang.
A Portuguese white wine from the Teja valley in eastern Douro. It’s a region long known for making port (since the 18th century) and Conceito winemaker Rita Marques copies the ancient ways to make this luscious style.
Through a field blend of ten different local grapes. Unlike the modern condition of growing one variety in one vineyard, field blends hark back to the days of lumping everything in the same plot: various whites, multiple reds, or both red and white together. While port is still made this way, most still wine blends are done in the winery. Field blends are trickier to manage, but it gives the wine more layers and complexity while adding some intrigue: when asked what varieties made it into this bottle, Marques replied with a wry smile, “Do you really want to know?”
Smelling this wine is like snorting a field at springtime: a rush of cut grass, flowers and ripe yellow fruit. That sharpness carries over in the initial palate but softens as the wine opens up, turning into rich honey and lemon curd with a zip of acidity and creamy texture. Ditch the chard during dim sum and drink this instead.
Conceito is available from Roque Fine Wines.