Symington is one of Portugal’s premiere Port bottlers, but recently the company has been expanding into non-fortified wines from Portugal’s Douro region, many of which are made using the same grapes you’ll find in Port, thanks to a partnership with the Prats family which is a big name in Bordeaux.
These wines, made under the Prats + Symington banner, have been produced for many years, but are finally working their way to our shores. How do they measure up? Well, they aren’t Port, but they aren’t bad, either…
2010 Quinta de Roriz Prazo de Roriz Douro DOC – A blend of at least six different Portuguese grapes, the most prevalent being Tinta Barroca at 37%. Lightly peppery and vaguely smoky nose, with some balsamic notes. On the body, mild and quite simple, dark berries, plus a touch of tar and chocolate. That black pepper on the nose makes a return on the finish, but just barely. Easy to drink and a little mysterious. B+ / $16
2011 Quinta de Roriz Post Scriptum Douro DOC – A blend of four grapes, Touriga Nacional making up 56%. Despite the playful tea character on the nose, this is a heavy wine with dark prune and a strong, salt licorice character. Long finish. Definitively a food wine, and one that can stand some time in bottle. B- / $25