What am I: João Tavares da Pina Torre de Tavares Bical-Cercial
João Tavares da Pina is a bon-vivant, talented cook, and charming conversationalist who is also laser-focused on making pure expressions of his Dão terroir with land that has been in his family for generations. His farm is 40 hectares, with 13 planted with grapes. Dominant on the property are the native Jaen, Rufete and Touriga Nacional red grapes, and Encruzado, Siria, and Bical for white grapes. He is also bringing back to life several rare and forgotten local varieties in a young vineyard specially planted for this purpose.
In the vineyards, João practices strict organic viticulture and uses no products except for organic compounds. He is somewhat obsessed with the great variety of cover crops that he has on his vineyard. These plants, such as chamomile and lavender, serve as natural fungal repellents and protectors of the vines. The vineyards are mostly granitic, with small parcels of clay, and very ancient marine sedimentary soils.
João has two primary brands that he sells wine under; Rufia, and Torres de Tavares.
Rufia wines tend to be fresh and drinkable young, while Torre de Tavares are more structured and textured wines. Tretas and Lero-Lero stand somewhat alone as their own wines, without a brand, light, fresh reds, right off the press.
João Tavares Torres showcases a white blend, composed of equal parts Bical (50%) and Cerceal (50%). Following destemming, the wine embarks on an 8 to 10-day maceration journey, followed by an 8 to 9-month aging voyage in 1250-liter chestnut barrels.Notably, this wine emanates a unique rocky essence, interwoven with vibrant tangerine and floral facets. A delicate touch of chamomile and jasmine adds to its complexity, while an unmistakable saline character enhances its suitability as an exceptional accompaniment to various culinary delights.