What am I: Humus Curtimenta Orange wine
Encosta da Quinta is a family property, home to Rodrigo Filipe and his Humus wines. Rodrigo is one of the pioneering and most experimental and exciting natural wine producers in Portugal. A self-taught viticulturist, and former civil engineer, he left that career behind to dedicate himself to the vineyards acquired by his grandfather in 1960.
The winery is located in the demarcated region of Óbidos, between the Atlantic Ocean and the Serra dos Candeeiros mountains, north of Lisbon. In this place, the focus is on natural winemaking with local varieties.
Humus Curtimenta is a uniquely made wine – a blanc de noir with more blanc added. Juice of Touriga Nacional (a red grape) is allowed to macerate on the skins of Arinto, Fernao Pires, and Sauvignon Blanc for 4 months in a clay pot. It is then transferred to used barrels of oak and chestnut for an additional 8 months.
The grapevines are planted in clay soils and the growing season is influenced by Atlantic breezes. With organic agriculture practices, no chemicals that could affect the natural balance of the terroir are used. When the grapes are ready, they are carefully harvested by hand.
Once harvest occurs, the grapes that compose Humus Curtimenta orange wine are pressed and left in contact with the skins for 3 months. Spontaneous fermentation takes place in amphoras with the presence of native yeasts. The wine then ages for 9 months in 225-liter chestnut barrels. The wine is bottled without filtering, clarifying, or the addition of sulfites.
Humus Curtimenta orange wine is citrusy and fresh, with hints of peach and red apple. Due to the skin maceration, there is also a sense of grip, tannin, and nuttiness in the finish that makes it a complex and enjoyable orange wine.
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