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Portuguese whites: Panel tasting results

Reflecting Portugal’s diversity of terroirs and grapes, and increasing focus on freshness and balance, old vines in cool sites delivered the best results.

Sarah Ahmed, Nelson Guerreiro and Joanna Locke MW tasted 109 wines with 1 Exceptional, 4 Outstanding and 30 Highly recommended.

Portuguese whites: Panel tasting scores

109 wines tasted

Exceptional 1

Outstanding 4

Highly recommended 30

Recommended 55

Commended 17

Fair 2

Poor 0

Entry criteria: producers and UK agents were invited to submit their current-release dry white wines from any region in Portugal other than Vinho Verde, and produced using native Portuguese white grapes only, including single-varietal wines or blends

Portugal has an exceptional diversity of grape varieties and terroir, making this panel tasting a stylistic smorgasbord. The standard of the country’s white wines has improved exponentially in the last decade. With a good 76% of wines here earning Highly recommended or Recommended ratings, the quality base was broad and the apex high. Expect to drink well from Portugal and expect to drink interesting, food-friendly wines from native grapes, which tend to a dry, rather than fruit-driven, profile.

Scroll down to see tasting notes and scores from the Portuguese whites panel tasting

Portuguese whites panel tasting scores

Wines were tasted blind

The judges

Nelson Guerreiro is a certified sommelier currently working as brand ambassador for prominent Italian producers at renowned Portuguese merchant Garrafeira Nacional, as well as a wine educator at the Turismo de Portugal schools.

Sarah Ahmed is an awarded wine writer, educator and judge with a focus on Portugal. The DWWA Regional Chair for Portugal, she is a Cavaleiro of the Confraria do Vinho do Porto and writes a monthly column for Revista de Vinhos.

Joanna Locke MW is a wine buyer for The Wine Society, responsible for sourcing wines from Alsace, the Loire and Portugal. Previously a buyer for Thresher group from 1991, she joined importer John E Fells in 2000, then moved to The Wine Society in 2004.

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