In Montargil, to the north of Alentejo, the Ataíde family has dedicated the ancestral patrimony they owned there to a noble cause: the production of high quality wines. The commitment they have shown ever since, with the help of the prestigious oenologist Susana Esteban, shows in the wine guides and in the fervor, always renewed, of the connoisseurs.
Montargil, in Portalegre, has been witnessing for a long time the birth of some of the most iconic wines from Alentejo. For the several generations, the Estate the Ataíde family considered their own was a garden of delights, full of childhood memories and fountain of family harmony.
Until the day, not very distant, when they decided to use two hectares of vineyard, observing that their wines had the power of a revelation. The first harvest occurred in 2007. It originated a magnificent wine, full of character.
Its current owner, Rosário Ataíde, has started the auspicious adventure of creating her own brand to display the virtues of her land. As her father, affectionately, called her “raposinha” (little fox), that was the name she chose for the estate and the wine.
Soon the two hectares turned into fifteen, and the wines of the winery became a very serious business when a bunch of great wine lovers nominated them and placed them among the best of Portugal. Nowadays Monte da Raposinha is firmly implanted in the select group of the most prestigious wine producers of the region.
In 2013, Susana Esteban, who had been elected Oenologist of the Year by Revista dos Vinhos in 2010, started to cooperate with Rosário Ataíde in Monte da Raposinha. The brand’s portfolio includes two types of white wine and four types of red, varying from the first wine produced for commercialization, called Nós to the rare edition of Furtiva Lágrima, a red for exceptional occasions.
Among these we have Monte da Raposinha Tinto and Monte da Raposinha Branco, recognized by their aromatic balance and great tasting. The Branco Reserva, made with Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc, that ages for eight months in barrel, is very gastronomic being one of the great triumphs of the brand. The red Athaíde Grande Escolha, was awarded, in 2015, the prize “Melhores Tintos do Ano” by the critic João Paulo Martins when he released his famous Portuguese wine guide.
With a score of 17,5, João Paulo Martins points out Grande Escolha 2011 for being “very well in the aroma”, in a “successful dialogue between fruit and barrel, … very appealing in tasting, soft and, overall, very elegant”.
In what concerns Furtiva lágrima, it has been, in its various editions, a magnet for the rapture of connoisseurs, having earned the prize Escolha da Imprensa 2014 and having been distinguished by Revista de Vinho with the outstanding score of 18, which has given it a place among the Top of Alentejo. It is a bright wine, originated in the best batches of French oak barrels, with a production of only 2000 bottles, made of Syrah, Alicante Bouschet and Touriga Nacional, that offers excellent tasting.
The maturity of Monte da Raposinha almost makes us forget that it has been elected, in 2010, Revelation Producer by Revista de Vinhos. This is one of the most important distinctions that can be achieved in Portugal. Nowadays, half a decade later, that revelation has become a certainty, unmoved, that reassures those who love their soft, elegant and fine blends.
Tolstoi wrote that all happy families are alike. The wines, fortunately, aren’t.