Sweet wine parings last week from Bryce Wiatrak, Sarah Wolf1, Adam Arlen, Michael Markarian, J.A.SAUMYA PERERA, Greg B. Carlstrom, guildsomm user, Ryan Bogdan, Phil Smith and Daniel Veit. I agree that these wines are more versatile than we often give them credit for. My most recent killer pairing was Ankimo (monkfish liver) with daikon, Ikura, and some amazing salty, dark colored sauce that I can't remember the name of with aged Jurancon.
This week: Baga
Where is this grown? What does it taste like? What styles can it make? Name 2 producers.
Portugal, mainly in Bairrada, Dao, and somewhat in Douro/Porto (Tinta da Bairrada).
It is mostly still dry red, plus fortified (in Port, specifically), and semi-sweet rose are common. It's a tiny berry, so the skin to juice ratio is high and produces a tannic wine.
Niepoort and Pato are two big names for Baga.
For many years, Baga was seen as a low quality, mass produced grape. Baga has been a key blending component of Portugal’s most successful brand, Mateus Rosé, which has sold over a billion bottles worldwide since its launch in 1942. See here for an incredible 1971 trailer for the wine: www.youtube.com/watch
To combat this image of cheap Portuguese rose, which Baga had become notoriously associated with, a few Bairrada producers decided to advocate for the grapes potential. Baga Friends was started in 2010, when a group of eight Bairrada producers with a passion for Baga decided to band together to help promote the importance and versatility of the grape. This fan club, led by the two founders by Filipa Pato (Filipa Pato Wines) and Mário Sérgio Nuno (Quinta das Bágeiras), has brought Baga back into the spotlight, as the producers bring into question what the best climate, soil types, and barrel aging treatments are for the tannic, high acid grape.
When treated properly (i.e. shorter macerations, lower yields, barrel aging, etc), the grape has the vibrancy and elegance of a Barolo or red Burgundy.
That commercial was pretty amazing.
Great post x2. Information appreciated, and that video is.....LEGEND haha.