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Madeira Vintners

MADEIRA’S NEWEST PRODUCER

A beginning is a time to take the most care that the balances are correct. - Frank Herbert, Dune

Founded on September 3, 2013, Madeira Vintners celebrated their first release in 2016. In most any other wine region on earth, a new producer or a passing from one generation to the other is a frequent occurrence, yet on Madeira it is the rarest of occurrences - Madeira Vintners is the first new producer since 1946!

 

‘SHE’ IS IN CHARGE!

“The question isn’t who’s going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” – Ayn Rand

Lisandra Gonçalves, is Madeiran and one of Portugal’s rising star winemakers. She was recruited to return home and lead the next generation of Madeira wine production. Madeira Vintners features the Island’s first ever, all female team.

PIONEERING THE PAST

Think only of the past as it’s remembrance gives you pleasure – Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

Madeira’s storied past and legendary wines have ignited the passions and imaginations of the world’s greatest sommeliers, writers, poets, critics and connoisseurs for generations, yet the Madeira wine industry has become a mere shadow of it’s former self. Many producers have consolidated or closed, some have focused on lower quality and lower priced wines, with little planning for the 30 years required for Frasquiera (vintage) wines. Madeira Vintners is committed to restoring a classic process that honors the traditions of Madeira’s best growers and restores the faith of Madeira’s legendary, quality producers. Madeira Vintners joins it’s long established and best quality neighbors in the pursuit of reimagining and reinvigorating the Island’s wine trade.

 

LEADING INTO THE FUTRE 

We are made wise not by the recollection of our past but by the responsibility for our future – George Bernard Shaw

Madeira Vintners works with growers who have an organic focus and features a new, state of the art, solar powered facility. Being the first new producer in several generations, the necessary equipment had to be conceived, designed and produced to meet Madeira’s unique production requirements.

 

THE FUTURE STARTS SLOW

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step  – Lao Tsu

The current releases are Madeira’s entry level, 3 year wines (Dry, Medium Dry, Medium Sweet and Sweet), this first step represents a new quality direction within the category for Madeira wine. As Madeira Vintners continues to refine and define a new paradigm for Madeira, future releases will no doubt, be recognizable as some of the Island’s best wines.

 

EVOLVING, ENHANCING AND ESTABLISHING A CATEGORY

Invention, it must be humbly admitted, does not consist in creating out of void, but out of chaos.

-Mary Shelley

 

If you are looking for deeply colored century old Madeira, that is not what these wines are, (yet!). The category for entry level Madeira exists primarily in grocery store and large box store channels – where race-to-the-bottom pricing has left the American consumer disinterested in young Madeira, for good reason. In comparative tastings, we were elated to find Madeira Vintners to be consistently better in each respective category and worthy of America’s best restaurants and retailers.

  • The only known enemy of Madeira is evaporation and human thirst. These bottles can remain unopened on the back bar of a restaurant indefinitely.
  • Unlike the short lived, open bottle of Port, Madeira works in warmer climates as well as cold ones and the complexity merits a diverse range of food pairings.
  • As an aperitif, it is not constrained by the desperate immediacy of Sherry and it’s requirement to be ‘fresh’. It has less alcohol than most Vermouth and acidity to stimulate the appetite.
  • As a digestive it lacks the alcohol of Bitters, Amaro or Vermouth and offers a choice of savory to sweet.
  • Mixologists are having a lot of fun with entry level Madeira, we have noticed recently. Welcome to a new quality paradigm within the category.

The wines are reminiscent of Mosel Riesling in the way they impact the palate. The intense aromas and vibrant flavors, delineated fruits and complexity convey the rich diversity of the Island.  There is bracing acidity, a choice of sweetness level, balance, length and breed in all four of the first wines.

 

ABOUT MADEIRA VINTNERS NOT BEING A COOPERATIVE

Madeira Vintners is a project founded and funded by the 19,000 member Cooperativa Agricola do Funchal, CRL (CAF), which, since 1951, has been integral to the Island’s agro-economic development. While the Cooperative provides stability, physical facilities and administrative support, Madeira Vintners is NOT a Cooperative type wine producer. Madeira Vintners carefully selects and purchases grapes from the Islands best growers, some who happen to be members of the cooperative and others who are not, as well as working with grapes from their own vineyards. Maderia Vintners has some of their own vineyards coming on line (Faja Pita) and will plant several more vineyards in the next few years, all to the ‘white varieties’ Tarrentez, Verdelho, Sercial and Malvasia.

 

The official site:

http://cafmadeira.pt/madeira-vintners/

 

Other resources:

http://catavino.net/introduction-madeira-wine/

http://napavalleyregister.com/wine/columnists/allison-levine/after-years-women-are-making-wine-in-madeira/article_3644dcc4-f36a-591c-878d-f93d886770a8.html