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HomeWineSymington Household Estates unveils €12m Douro vineyard design

Symington Household Estates unveils €12m Douro vineyard design


With a manufacturing capability of 691,000 litres, the Quinta do Ataíde vineyard within the Vilariça Valley shall be solely used for unfortified wine manufacturing.

The funding sum is triple the quantity initially estimated again in 2018, and the vineyard is a key a part of the corporate’s technique to double premium unfortified wine gross sales by 2030.

‘For the reason that authentic plans have been introduced, now we have determined to considerably enhance the dimensions of the ability because of our confidence within the rising demand for premium wines from the Douro,’ mentioned Rob Symington, a director at Symington Household Estates.

He added that offer chain challenges led to by Covid, and extra lately by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, had led to a rise within the prices of constructing supplies.

Information of Symington Household Estates’ elevated funding in unfortified wine manufacturing comes as the corporate, which additionally owns Port homes Graham’s, Dow’s and Warre’s amongst others, mentioned it grappled with ‘unprecedented’ weather conditions within the Douro this 12 months, particularly drought and heatwaves.

In its 2022 harvest report, the corporate mentioned Portugal had been in extreme drought for the reason that winter, citing the nation’s Met Workplace. Rainfall at Quinta do Bomfim within the coronary heart of the Douro was 70% under the 30-year common, the group mentioned.

After starting to select within the Douro Superior on 22 August, the group’s earliest begin to harvest on report, temperatures fell again in early September. This allowed grapes to mature extra step by step, and a few rain adopted – earlier than the corporate determined to pause selecting for 10 days.

‘Our viticulture and vineyard groups labored flat out by way of probably the most difficult Douro harvests and now we have made some very promising wines, regardless of the astonishing situations,’ mentioned head winemaker Charles Symington within the harvest report. ‘Total, our yields per vine have been 20% under common, a lot better than we had anticipated in August.’

The group mentioned that unfortified wine prospects had been buoyed by the resilience of native grape varieties grown at excessive altitude to extreme situations.

Forward of anticipated outcomes of a multi-year selection examine, the corporate revealed that Donzelinho Tinto was one in all its best-performing native pink grape varieties within the Douro for local weather adaptability and high quality unfortified wine manufacturing.

Symington has began planting the grape selection at its Quinta do Ataíde property, the place in 2014 it created an experimental Selection Library comprised of 53 grape varieties.

The group mentioned the 12 months had proven the group how its native, low-yielding vines may nonetheless carry out nicely with a lot much less water and better temperatures.

Rob Symington added, ‘I don’t need to downplay the severity of those [climatic] challenges, however for the foreseeable future we count on we will produce sufficient wine and of superb high quality to satisfy our wants.’

Development of the Quinta do Ataíde vineyard began in 2021, having been delayed on account of Covid issues and is anticipated to be accomplished in time for the 2023 classic. Symington mentioned the vineyard’s capability may enhance, if required, to about 750,000 litres inside 5 years.

Symington Household Estates reported an 11% and seven% enhance in gross sales of Douro wines by worth and quantity respectively year-to-date, versus final 12 months. Whole unfortified wines gross sales reached roughly 250,000 nine-litre instances in 2021.

‘We purpose to double our wine gross sales earlier than the top of this decade, primarily based on rising demand and pleasure for Portuguese wines around the globe and gross sales will increase in Portugal,’ Symington mentioned.

The corporate owns greater than 1,000 hectares (ha) of Douro vineyards, however it’s rising its winery space to provide extra unfortified wines.

Earlier this month, the group revealed it had acquired the Quinta Nova do Carrascal winery within the Vilariça Valley, which has 11.5ha underneath vine.

The brand new winery shall be built-in into the Quinta do Ataíde property, bringing the corporate’s whole space within the Douro Superior to greater than 330ha of organically-farmed vineyards.

‘With its distinctive flat panorama created by the divide between two geological plates, plentiful in native water provides, we imagine that this a part of the Douro Superior, close to Spain, has a implausible potential for the manufacturing of high-quality unfortified wines,’ Symington mentioned.


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