Vineyards

Cortes de Cima is an estate of 365 hectares, which is only medium sized for the Alentejo. 140 ha are planted with vines, 50 ha olive trees, and 70 ha are reforestation of cork, holm oaks, pine and carob trees.

Terroir = soil, location, climate

Our soils are brown Mediterranean clay with deep, limestone subsoil, which provide good drainage. That’s very important for vines.  Our vineyards are nestled against the slopes of the 400m Serra do Mendro, the mountain range which marks the northern boundary of lower Alentejo.The Vidigueira region of Alentejo enjoys very high sunshine hours with warm, dry summer temperatures, tempered by cool Atlantic breezes.

Vineyard Varieties

Our oldest vineyards, surrounding the house and winery, were planted in 1991. The names of the parcels of land where the grapes are grown, have been our inspiration behind the brand names of our wines, – ‘Cortes de Cima’, ‘Chaminé de Gião’ and ‘Courela dos Pageis’.

In choosing our varieties as well as our trellis system we opted to follow the looser ‘Vinho Regional’ regulations, over the more restrictive ‘DOC’ rules. However back in 1991, Syrah was not permitted on either list, but Hans planted it anyway, convinced that we had an ideal climate and soil conditions for that famous Rhone variety. Our first ‘illegal’ vintage of Syrah in 1998, was bottled as Incógnito, and quickly earned accolades and notoriety in Portugal, and Medals in London, Brussels and Bordeaux.

Today, breakdown by variety is as follows - Red varieties – 112 ha of Aragonez , Syrah, Touriga Nacional, Petit Verdot, Trincadeira, Alicante Bouschet, and Cabernet Sauvignon.  White varieties – 28 ha of Antao Vaz, Verdelho, Viognier, Sauvignon Blanc, Gouveio and Chardonnay.

Sustainable Viticulture

Our vineyards and olive groves are accredited under a sustainable minimal spray program called ‘Integrated Protection’. Under this program, we are required to only use ’soft’ chemicals, and only when symptoms appear – preventive spraying is not permitted. Our vineyards and olive trees are subject to spot checks by independent monitors.

Our open canopy trellising provides the grapes with more sun exposure, which results in greater fruit intensity in the wines. It is also a great help in reducing spraying in the vineyard, as the increased exposure to sun and air, reduces fungus and mildew naturally. We were pioneers in Portugal with this raised trellis system, under the tutelage of the renown Australian ‘Vine Dr.’ Richard Smart.

To enhance biodiversity in the vineyard, we sow inter-row cover crops, a natural and organic way to suppress weeds without herbicides, as well as adding valuable organic matter to the soil. We also make use of the canes leftover after pruning the vines, leaving them to decompose in the vineyard, as another source of natural mulch.

As global warming pushes temperatures up, water use is another critical issue in the vineyard. We are completely self sufficient for our irrigation needs, only using water from our own reservoirs, which are replenished during the rainy winter months. Our vineyards are all irrigated following a system of ‘regulated deficit’ drip irrigation. “It´s important for grape quality to always give the vines less water than they want.” explains Hans. ” We must remember that water is a precious resource.”

«

Chaminé Branco

Buy online

 

Herbaceous crispness with a final burst of acidity.
A blend of local and international varieties from our cool Alentejan Atlantic coastal vineyards.

Cortes de Cima Branco

Buy online

 

A barrel aged blend of local and international varieties grown on our cool Atlantic coastal vineyards and in the warmer Alentejan interior.

Sauvignon Blanc

Buy online

 

A 100% Sauvignon Blanc produced exclusively from grapes grown at our new coastal vineyards near Vila Nova de Milfontes on the Alentejan coast, 3 km from the Atlantic Ocean.

Courela

Buy online

 

Fresh, light bodied and easy drinking. With intense ruby colours and attractive ripe berry character. A fresh and young wine that is ready for immediate drinking.

The name Courela originates from one of our vineyard plots – Courela dos Pageis, and translates as ‘a strip of cultivated land’.

Chaminé

Buy online

 

This is our most popular wine, boasting a consistent track record. A juicy, ripe, easy drinking wine, bottled early, usually within 6 months of harvest time and without any oak ageing. Best drunk young, but will improve with short term cellaring. Mainly Aragonez (Tempranillo) and Syrah, blended with other Portuguese varieties.

The name Chaminé (pronounced: sha-min-E; translation: chimney) originates from one of our vineyard plots – Chaminé de Gião

Cortes de Cima

Buy online

 

Our flagship wine. Full bodied blend with ripe, silky tannins.

Syrah

Buy online

 

Ripe rich fruit with some earth and spice.
In 1991, we were the first ones to plant Syrah in the Alentejo, choosing rootstock from southern Rhone clones. Today, our range consists of 3 different 100% Syrah varietals.

Aragonez

Buy online

OUT OF STOCK!

 

Outstanding tannins with aromas of red berry fruits.

Known as Tempranillo in Spain, and Tinta Roriz in the north of Portugal. Always an elegant wine, it has richness with structure and outstanding tannins, which impart a good ageing ability.


Trincadeira

Buy online

 

One of the more common indigenous varieties in Southern Portugal, characterized by fruit, and low tannins.


Petit Verdot

Buy online

 

Intense concentration, strong tannins, aromatic complexity with a refreshing natural acidity.

One of the ‘noble’ Bordeaux varieties. A late ripener, it is better suited for warmer climates, like Alentejo, where it can reach a good maturity, resulting in wines of intense concentration and color, strong tannins and aromatic complexity, while maintaining it’s freshness, thanks to it’ s ability to maintain it’s natural acidity.


Homenagem a Hans Christian Andersen

Homenagem a Hans Christian Andersen

Buy online

 

A special commemorative 100% Syrah launched for the bicentennial of the Danish storyteller Hans Christian Andersen. Elegant with a soft, long finish.

In 1991, we were the first ones to plant Syrah in the Alentejo, choosing rootstock from southern Rhone clones. Today, our range consists of 3 different 100% Syrah varietals. Starting with the entry level is our popular ‘Cortes de Cima Syrah’, which is bottled every vintage. Next, we move up a notch both in concentration and quality, to the mid-level range – ‘Homenagem a Hans Christian Andersen’, bottled in most vintages. We culminate at the top, with our reserve quality labeling, the iconic ‘Incógnito’, only bottled in exceptional years.


Touriga Nacional

Buy online

OUT OF STOCK!

 

Lifted violet and dark berry fruit aromatics, elegant intense and long palate.

Best known as one of the 5 main varieties used for Port wine, further south here in the Alentejo it’s fruit develops a highly floral and aromatic character. It is a low producer, with both small bunches and berries.

Previous vintages have won numerous gold medals and trophies, including IWC Best Portuguese Red Trophy (2005), IWC Touriga Trophy (2003), and the Wine Spectator’s Top 100 Wine List (2002).


Incógnito

Buy online

 

Bold, superb balance and sumptuous finish. The mystery name refers to a time when Syrah was not permitted in Alentejo.


Reserva

Buy online

OUT OF STOCK!

 

The top of the range, made only in exceptional years. Complex layers of fruit, long on the palate with solid tannins.

This is the star of our range, only produced in limited quantities and in exceptional years. A full bodied blend of Aragonez, Syrah and other Portuguese varieties, barrel aged for 12 months in new oak barrels. The wine is finely structured, with a feeling of restrained power.

Previous vintages have always scored +90 Parker Points.


Olive Oil

Buy online

 

Our Olive Oil is produced from our own olive trees, which are from the Portuguese variety, Cobrançosa, planted shortly after our arrival to Cortes de Cima in 1988. As with our vineyards, our olivegroves are accredited under a sustainable program called ‘Integrated Protection’, which limits and regulates the use of chemicals.


Vinegar

Buy online

 

Created from pure red wine from the Portuguese Touriga Nacional variety. Aged for 5 years in American oak barrels.


»

Find us...

Latest from our gallery