Eating out with two small kids is a lottery so the decision to dine out last night was a gamble. But after five weeks of passing by Z’Arcos in the cosy little village of São Gonçalo, we gave it a chance – and took the risk. Known by the locals for well made espetada’s we didn’t have to look in the menu for long – the wine list was given more attention!
First of all; the prices. Knowing I can order a nicely priced bottle with my espetada is of course a joy but it also makes me sad the opposite is a fact back home. A 2005 Vinhas Velhas from Luís Pato was our choice and the waiter fetched a bottle from the wine refrigerator keeping the wines at 15 C. Price? EUR 21! Back home? A guess – most likely around EUR 60. Enough said!
Starting with a fine Caldo Verde with a lovely smoked chouriço the wine was given some time to breathe. And just when the espetada’s entered the scene Vinhas Velhas started to show its fine Baga notes with dark cherries, spices, chalky minerality and sweet licorice. Lovely nose with just a hint of oak. Such a nice texture with refined tannins, not at all vulgar like so many Baga’s can get.
A bit floral, the dark cherries now accompanied by Victoria plum skin, fresh tobacco and that chalky minerality again that i guess doesn’t take a first-time Baga drinker with storm! Fine length and just starting to show maturity. Followed during the evening and this beauty has at least two or three more years before I would call it developed.
A well deserved 90 p score for the 2005 Vinhas Velhas but this night the espetada’s stole the entire show! What fine matured beef charcoal grilled with just salt, garlic and bay leaves. Simplicity at its best!