What am I: Representative of perhaps the most traditional and ancient winemaking practice in Portugal, this wine is made entirely in clay amphora, also known as talha in local Alentejo dialect. This technique has an unbroken connection to ancient Roman winemaking practiced long ago in this area of Portugal.
The XXVI Talhas Project was born out of a desire to rehabilitate one of the most traditional wineries in the region. Villa Alva is one of the villages central to the historic production of talha wine. This particular cellar has been in the same family for generations, and some of the talha are several hundred years old. The name of the project refers to the 26 talhas used in this cellar. This wine is named for Mestre Daniel who lived from 1923-1985 and was a master carpenter, as well as the winemaker for this winery.
XXVI Talhas Mestre Daniel Amphora Tinto 2018 is a blend of traditional Alentejo grapes; Trincadeira, Aragones, and Tinta Grossa. The grapes are destemmed and lightly crushed. Fermentation takes place in the talha with skin contact throughout the process. There is no temperature control and spontaneous fermentation occurs from native yeast. The wine is not filtered or stabilized, and the only filtration takes place as the finished wine passes through the cap inside the amphora on its way out the tap to the bottle.
Mestre Daniel is a fruity red, with a nose of wild forest berries, and with the wild, mysterious and resinous quality that you can only find in true talha wine.
Region, Sub-region and/or DOC: Alentejo
Grape Varieties: Tricadeira, Aragonez, Tinta Grossa
Alcohol by volume: 12.5%
*THIS WINE IS ONLY AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE OUTSIDE OF PORTUGAL