Casa Ferreirinha, Extra Virgin Olive Oil (500ml)
Regular price £18.00
Tax included. Shipping calculated at checkout.
The origins of Casa Ferreirinha date back to 1952 and the production of the first ever vintage of Barca-Velha. Fernando Nicolau de Almeida kick started the quality revolution in Douro still wines and Casa Ferreirinha was the first producer in the region dedicated entirely to producing wine, rather than Port. Named after the legendary Porto matriarch Dona Antónia Adelaide Ferreira, one of the formidable widows of the world of wine, Casa Ferreirinha pays homage to the memory of this visionary woman.
Purchased by Sogrape in 1987, Casa Ferreirinha has 520 hectares of vineyard in all of the three Douro sub-regions: Baixo Corgo, Cima Corgo and Douro Superior. The staggeringly beautiful Quinta da Leda is Casa Ferreirinha’s flagship estate. Located close to the border with Spain in the far east of the Douro Superior, it is the source of grapes for many of the top wines in the range.
The great Luís Sottomayor has been head winemaker since 1989 and restrains the Douro’s natural exuberance to produce wines that have a vibrant freshness allied to a wonderful texture and depth. The care with which Luís selects the fruit for each wine is especially evident in the quality of the white wines. Most whites from the Douro display the hallmarks of heat, yet the ‘Planalto’, from higher altitude vineyards, is deliciously fresh and vibrant. The unoaked ‘Papa Figos’ white, a blend of Rabigato, Viosinho, Arinto, Gouveio, Códega and Moscatel, is also wonderfully crisp and aromatic. Quinta do Sairrão, one of the coolest vineyard sites in the Cima Corgo, located at 600 metres above sea level, is the source of grapes for the ‘Vinha Grande’ white and rosé. The white is partially fermented and then aged for seven months in new French oak barrels. It is a complex and textured wine with a buttery richness from the oak. The ‘Vinha Grande’ rosé, made from 100% Touriga Nacional, boasts bright aromas of red berries, coupled with hints of violet and a lively acidity.
The Casa Ferreirinha reds are all characterised by great depth of flavour. They range from the unoaked, ripe and juicy ‘Esteva’ and ‘Papa Figos’, through to the oak-aged ‘Vinha Grande’ and ‘Callabriga’, which marry intense and concentrated aromas of red and black fruit with subtle spicy hints of tobacco box and cocoa. The ‘Callabriga’ 2020 won both the Portuguese Red Trophy and the Douro Red Trophy at the 2023 International Wine Challenge. The ‘Quinta da Leda’, a blend of Touriga Franca, Touriga Nacional, Tinto Cão and Tinta Roriz grown on the eponymous estate, is aged for 18 months in oak barrels, 50% of which are new. It is a wine of great complexity and elegance, with velvety tannins, a vibrant acidity and aromas of ripe blackberry and damson, cedary spicy notes and a subtle slate-like minerality.
The ‘Castas Escondidas’, meaning ‘hidden varieties’, is an exciting red blend of some of the lesser-known grape varieties of the Douro Valley such as Bastardo, Marufo Tinto, Touriga Fêmea and Tinta Francisca along with 18% fruit from low-yielding, old, field-blend plots.
Two of Portugal’s most fabled wines are the jewels of the Casa Ferreirinha crown: ‘Reserva Especial’ and ‘Barca-Velha’. Only produced in indisputably outstanding years, Luís Sottomayor is scrupulous in his decision to declare a vintage. The most recent ‘Reserva Especial’ 2014 vintage was declared in December 2022 and is the 18th ever to be produced since 1960. It was fittingly awarded 98 points by James Suckling, who described it as an ‘undeclared Barca Velha’. The 2014 is complex, powerful and yet elegant, bringing intense flavours of black cherries and blackcurrants with spicy notes of pepper and tobacco box, menthol hints and a subtle slate-like minerality to the palate. We have very limited quantities available, so please speak to your Account Manager regarding availability.
Another recent release is the certified organic Casa Ferreirinha Extra Virgin Olive Oil, produced from ancient olive groves across the Douro Valley in the Cima Corgo and Douro Superior. The majority of the olive groves are well over 100 years old, although 10% of the blend is made up of olives from trees that are younger, around 30 years old. As with old field blend vines, it was customary for farmers to plant many different types of olive trees to ensure a consistent harvest. The resulting olive oil therefore blends a great array of olive varieties, from the melodic sounding Cobrançosa, Redondal and Verdeal Transmontana, to Galega, Lentisca and Madural.
Olive oil production on the Casa Ferreirinha estates dates back 200 years to the start of the 19th century. The olives are from ancient groves in the Douro Valley: in the Cima Corgo (Quinta do Porto and Quinta do Seixo) and the Douro Superior (Quinta da Leda, Quinta do Sairrão, Tapada do Castanheiro and São Gabriel). The majority of the olive groves on these estates are well over 100 years old, though the groves at Quinta do Sairrão and Tapada do Castanheiro are younger, around 30 years old, and make up around 10% of the blend. As with old field blend vines, it was customary for farmers to plant many different types of olive trees in their groves, ensuring a consistent harvest, so there is a great array of olive varieties in the oldest groves. The olives are all grown organically and the olive oil is certified organic.
2022 was a challenging year in the Douro, both in the vineyards and in the olive groves, due to hot and dry conditions throughout the growing cycle. During flowering in May, high temperatures severely impacted fruit set, resulting in reduced yields. The hot and dry conditions continued throughout the summer, further reducing yields and resulting in smaller olives. The harvest began at the end of October and, though yields were lower, the quality of the olives harvested was excellent, producing exceptional olive oils packed with flavour.
Most of the olives are harvested by hand, due to the challenging topography and steep slopes of the Douro Valley. The oils are then quickly transported to the stone mill for pressing at cold temperatures to preserve the freshness and aromatics of the olives. The oil is then left to settle for a few days before the final blend is assembled. Negrinha de Freixo and Madural make up around 60% of the blend, Verdeal Transmontana 25%, Cobrançosa 10% and the remaining 5% comprises various other varieties, including Galega, Redondal, and Lentisca.
An exceptionally aromatic and fresh olive oil with notes of tomato leaf, freshly cut grass and nuts. Rich on the palate with a marked spiciness which lingers on the harmonious finish.