Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

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Colares, exceptional but now minuscule dop wine region on the west coast of Portugal just north of the capital Lisbon (see map under portugal). These vineyards were spared from the phylloxera pest in the 19th century thanks to their sandy composition but have struggled to survive today’s commercial pressures. Located on a narrow strip of sand dunes on the clifftops above the Atlantic, with roots anchored in the clay below, 80% of the ungrafted are ramisco. Made principally from malvasia de Colares, which is genetically distinct from other known Malvasia grapes, white Colares is distinctly salty and mineral, sometimes like a fino sherry, while Ramisco can be reminiscent of a particularly austere pinot noir.