Stop what you’re doing! We have a BAGA to tell you about.
Did you know that the Pato family has been producing wine since the 18th century?
More recently, in 1970, João Pato started to bottle wine from his vineyard, becoming the first producer/bottler in the Bairrada region after its demarcation.
His son Luis inherited this nonconformist and entrepreneurial spirit and, in 1980, produced his first wine – a single varietal wine of incredible quality and rarity that is today searched for by connoisseurs as if it were a fabulous treasure.
This “solitary warrior”, as he is seen by many, primarily produces single varietal wines from a single plot and with minimum intervention. Speaking of minimum intervention, this NATURAL BAGA (Baga – the typical variety from the Bairrada region) is a perfect example of precisely that. Seeing as it’s a variety with an enormous antioxidative capacity (this word isn’t the easiest), BAGA requires that all its vintage wines be decanted.
As an undisputed BAGA connoisseur, Luís Pato decided to prove that he could make wine without adding anything else. No acid (as happens in warmer regions), no sugar (as happens in colder regions). Nothing. He simply works with what nature has to offer. As it is. All Natural. So, it’s equally natural that the experience you’ll have with this wine also be a unique and incomparable one.
The Wine: The BAGA variety has an enormous antioxidative capacity that “requires” the decanting of its vintage wines. Knowing that adding sulphurous (SO2) has a stabilising and antioxidant effect, the producer wanted to demonstrate this variety’s antioxidant capacity by avoiding any kind of addition to the wine. Seeing as the climate in the region where the grapes are grown is appropriate for making wines without adding acids (which happens in warmer regions) or sugars (which occurs in colder regions), it was possible to create this wine (which was an experience with 2012’s harvest) without any additives to the product supplied by nature – the BAGA grape. In this way, what nature has provided is kept without any additions during the whole winemaking process, including bottling. Created with people who are allergic to SO2 in mind.
Partridge salad with hazelnuts and chocolate vinaigrette
by chef Pedro Almeida
Ingredients (4 people):
For the partridge:
3 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
½ an onion
1 dl virgin olive oil
100 ml white wine
100 gr toasted hazelnuts
400 gr lettuce leaves (different types, if possible)
1 dl red wine
2 dl olive oil
Freshly ground pepper
100 gr dark chocolate
0,5 dl red wine vinegar
Season with salt and pepper
Thinly slice the garlic, chop the onion and cut the leek into small pieces. Make a bed of these ingredients in an oven tray and place the partridge on top. Drizzle with olive oil and white wine.
Cover with aluminium foil and roast in the oven for 1:30h at 150ºC.
Emulsify remaining ingredients and juices from the roast with the toasted hazelnuts, adding a drizzle of olive oil (use a hand/stick blender).
Shred the partridge meat and mix with emulsion.
Decorate with parsley leaves.
Heat the wine in a small pot and let it reduce to 2/3.
Add the chocolate and take off heat and stir continuously, so the mixture doesn’t split.
Using a blender, emulsify this mixture with olive oil and vinegar.
Spread the partridge on the bottom of a serving plate and top with the lettuce leaves. Drizzle with the vinaigrette, a pinch of salt flower and decorate with parsley leaves.