Wine on

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 28 September, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 28 September, 2003, 12:00am


Vinha D'Ervideira arinto 2000, $91

Portuguese must be the world's least comprehensible language. I once spent a month in Portugal and all I learned to say was vinho tinto, which means red wine, and branco, which is white. Still, what more do you need? Last week I was served a glass of Vinha D'Ervideira at the Pousada Pak Sha Wan, a Portuguese bar and restaurant in Sai Kung. This is a most quaffable wine from the baking plains of the southern, inland Alentejano region, near the border with Spain. The wine is vigorous, with a refreshing tartness on the palate. At $91 it is also great value. Drink it with codfish balls or any other fish dish.

Pousada Pak Sha Wan (tel: 2335 5515)

Grand'Arte trincadeira 2000, $198

From the marvellous Ribatejo region, this beauty has a spicy cherry taste and is nicely oaked. Its ancient grape variety is made into port up in the Douro valley, but in Ribatejo it is used to make robust reds, wines that simply burst with taste and colour. This was named best-value red

of the year at the recent London Wine Show. Sip this with roast lamb and you will see why.

Watson's (tel: 2147 3641)

Chamine Cortes de Cima aragonez/trincadeira 2000, $165

In recent years, Portuguese vintners have been investing cannily in making upmarket table wines. Some of these are superb, and their prices tend to remain reasonable. This winery is owned by Danish settlers, part of a wave of newcomers that is propelling modern, fruit-fuelled styles. Soft and subtle, this blend has a gorgeous bouquet and generous taste.

Appellation (tel: 2866 6335)