domingo, 19 de agosto de 2012

Herdade do Esporao (D.O. Alentejo)


In 1989, the first Esporão wine is launched, being considered one of the best Portuguese wines. Winner of a number of prizes and international awards, this wine is known both nationally and internationally.

- History: Over 30 Years of History: Maturity, Experience and Knowledge. The origins of the Herdade do Esporão and its winemaking activities, date back to the prehistoric times of the megalithic cultures and the Bronze Age. Already during the Roman occupation, the wines of the settlement of Esporão were exported to the whole Empire. The boundaries of the estate were established in 1267 and have remained practically unaltered since then.

- Terroir: Terroir is a French term that designates a complex variety of factors that influence vines, determining the quality of the grape and resulting wine. Sun exposure, soil, microfauna, flora, the type of grape variety and climate are just some of the factors that lend the wine its unique characteristics. At Herdade do Esporão they have a unique terroir, where the intensity of the Alentejo sun tempered by the cool Atlantic breezes and the volcanic and schistous soils produce superb wines.

- Vineyards: The grape varieties are carefully selected, with an overriding concern to use varieties endemic to the Alentejo region while making every effort to maintain their particular characteristics.

Despite the recognition afforded to Alentejo wines, Finagra has set up an ampelographic field on Herdade do Esporão, in order to test the quality of the grape varieties and determine the percentage contribution of each one of its wines.

Average production at Herdade do Esporão is currently over 7,000,000 litres a year, thus achieving Finagra’s initial objective of producing the best wines in each segment that are both good value and in sufficient quantity for export.

- Grape varieties: An integral part of their terroir, varieties they plant are defined in terms of its adaptability to the region and their oenological potential.
Having planted over 40 different varieties in their vineyards theyt find an interesting balance between the traditional varieties Alentejanas (as the Aragonese, the Trincadeira, the Castellan, the Antão Vaz, Closet) and other national and international grape varieties that have proven to adapt well to region (Alicante Bousquet, Touriga Nacional, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Verdelho, Semillion).

In 2010, in partnership with the National Institute of Biological Resources, initiated the planting of a field Ampelographic in order to restore and preserve the heritage of national and international varieties. In this experimental project they planted 9.7 hectares of vineyard on a total of 188 varieties.

. Castas Tintas: Alicante; Bouschet; Aragonez; Cabernet Sauvignon; Castelão; Petit Verdot; Syrah; Touriga Franca; Touriga Nacional; Trincadeira; Trincadeira das Pratas.
. Castas Brancas: Alvarinho; Antão Vaz; Arinto; Rabo de Ovelha; Semillon; Siria   Verdelho; Viosinho.

- Work schedule:
Most of the grapes for their wines are supplied by their own Estates (Esporão and Perdigões), but they also have 15 local partners with whom y thehave long-term contracts for the supply of high-quality grapes. 2 members of their technical team also specialise in monitoring these suppliers, guaranteeing that the rules of the “Esporão Grape Supplier Manual” are scrupulously complied with.

- Agricultural sustainability and best practices:
. All their vineyards follow the principles of "integrated pest management" and part follow the principles of organic farming;
. Most of thir soils do not receive any type of call, practice what they believe will contribute to better protection, fertility and sustainability of soils. It is also an important contribution that they give to the capture of CO2.
. Only use pesticides when they are strictly necessary. To minimize its use, we use the best information systems, based on historical information and mathematical models help us predict the occurrence of pests.
. Only use contact herbicides (not contaminate the soil) used in this lab ruçadoras (cutters) to manage the herbs that appear in the vineyard. In the vineyards "organic" (about 80ha) not use any products.

- Mission and Values: To stand out and gain worldwide recognition as the Portuguese wine and olive oil producer par excellence. To achieve this in a sustained way and to exceed expectations. Their values reflect their identity as a company and as individuals:
Excellence – Only the best satisfies us.
Passion – For our products and work.
Responsibility – Social, cultural and environmental.
Demanding – Firstly with ourselves, but also with others.
Integrity – We are honest and rigorous.
Tradition – Understanding the past, while living in the present.

- Products: Wine production at Herdade do Esporão has given rise to a large portfolio of wines, grouped under different brands and aimed at specific market segments. Their products include high volume wines such as Monte Velho, Alandra and Vinha da Defesa, which are extremely popular among Portuguese and international consumers. Our top-of-the-range wines (premium and super premium) include the renowned Esporão Reserva and Private Selection, the always innovative Monocastas and the exclusive Torre do Esporão.

Exported to more than 50 countries, Herdade do Esporão wines share a common denominator: quality. There is indeed an overriding concern to constantly raise the quality levels of their wines and this requires strategic investment in improved production conditions and the application of the knowledge, creativity and enterprise of their winemakers in innovative products. We seek to modernise the profile of their wines and to surprise consumers, without, however, denying the wine tradition of the Alentejo or subverting the oenological characteristics of the region's grape varieties.

In 2009 they redesigned the visual identity of their wines, in order to meet domestic and international consumer preferences.

Also worth a mention are their fortified, sparkling and Late Harvest wines. These wines reflect a product diversification strategy, making better use of the potential of the Herdade do Esporão terroir, and are also a sign of our innovative market positioning. In the case of these wines with special characteristics, the intention is also to offer products of the highest quality and to thus increase the prestige of the Esporão brand, the Alentejo region and the Portuguese wine sector.

Herdade do Esporao
Apartado 31 Reguengos de Monsaraz 7200-999
Telf : (00 351)  266 509 270

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