I met Oscar Quevedo Jr. in 2009 at the European Wine Bloggers Conference in Lisbon, and he still writes his family's winery blog. He is a prime example of how wineries can benefit from a likable brand ambassador who is adept at social media - and an all-around nice guy. Along with his winemaker sister, Claudia, Oscar is one of the more youthful members of a family that has made wine in the Douro Valley for generations. Quevedo's extensive line up of Ports includes lovely ruby, tawny, white, rose, and vintage ports.
Yesterday Oscar was at Columbia Wine Company - which boasts quality wine from around the globe - located way uptown at 170th and Broadway in Washington Heights. The store was hosting a tasting with over a dozen bottles from Portugal, South Africa, and more. Those who know me well know I adore Port, and I did buy both Quevedo tawny and rose Ports straight off the tasting table. However, I'm often more excited about the Douro's dry wines, because most people are unaware of them. So I was eager to present these wines, made from blends of native Portuguese grapes, at last evening's intimate dinner party.
Oscar white was from 2012, and it was a medium bodied white wine with a nose of green apple. It had refreshing acidity and crisp, bright fruit flavors. It was a perfect pairing with crab cakes served on arugula with hazelnut oil and a roasted red pepper coulis.
The red wines of the Douro are dense, with full-on black fruit and plenty of tannins to stand up to fatty dishes like lamb or steak. As the sociable evening continued, my friend pulled the cork on the red Oscar and we sipped it with hard cheeses, including a buttery cheddar reserve. It was a wonderful way to end the evening - which, had we decided to stay up even later, would have eventually led to that bottle of Tawny. But my recently-purchased Quevedo Ports will have to wait for another magical evening of wine, food, and friendship.