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FitaPreta is António Maçanita’s estate winery located outside the ancient Roman city of Evora, set among the sun-drenched hills of Alentejo. Founded in 2004 as a partnership between António and the British viticulturist David Booth, FitaPreta has since evolved into a benchmark estate for the New Portugal, frequently earning Antonio accolades like “Winemaker of the Year.”
António works only with indigenous varieties and ambient yeast ferments, crafting wines that are keenly representative of Alentejo, but with a balance and freshness that few others in the region have been able to match. Painstaking vineyard work, nighttime harvests and entirely gravity-fed winemaking are elements of António’s process that yield wines that are “full of sun,” as he says, but with lift and elegance instead of cloying power and over-extracted fruit. António operates on the Portuguese idea of “Palpite,” or intuition, to communicate terroir, with a foot firmly planted in both camps of tradition and modernity. He allows each parcel to ferment slowly and separately, combining the final blend to showcase a tapestry of the landscape of Southern Portugal. Each markedly different, but with a throughline of elegance and purity, the broad scope of the wines he creates at FitaPreta is a testament to his inquisitive intellect and fastidious attention to detail in his winemaking processes.
WHAT MAKES THIS WINE UNIQUE?
This is a traditional Alentejo white blend. Hand-sorted to select the very best fruit in the harvest, Fitapreta Branco is spontaneously fermented with indigenous yeasts in stainless steel, then racked using gravity to stainless steel aging tanks. The result is a layered, crystal-clear expression of terroir and fruit.
2018 90WA; 2016 89IWR; 2015 89WA; 201389WA; 2012 90 WA; 2010 90WA
40% Antao Vaz, 40% Roupeiro, 20% Arinto. Sustainably grown vines planted from 1979-1989. Tended in calcareous clay soils at 300-400 m (984-1,312 ft) elevation
Grilled fish, crudo preparations, delicately prepared seafood and shellfish.
VINIFICATION AND AGEING:
Spontaneously fermented using indigenous yeasts in stainless steel, then racked using gravity to stainless steel aging tanks for 6 months.
LOCATION, SOIL, CLIMATE:
The Alentejo is a large region in southeastern central Portugal, which is one of the agricultural centers of the country. The climate is Atlantic-Mediterranean, with significant diurnal-nocturnal temperature differences. This temperature range produces fruit with a natural combination of maturity and freshness. The Alentejo sees 3000 hours of annual sunshine and 600mm of annual rainfall, less than 15% of which falls during the growing season. These vineyards are grown in calcareous clay at 300-400m elevation asl.
Bright straw-yellow. On the nose, fresh orchard and stone fruit commingle with apple skin and faint herbal notes. On the palate, good concentration and weight, with bright fresh fruit and clean acidity. Nicely focused on the finish with a pronounced chalkiness to the mineral cut.