Touriga National Wine Variety

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Touriga nacional is best known as a variety for producing port and port style wines, but it is increasingly used to make table wines. In Portugal's Douro Valley Touriga Nacional, Touriga Francesa, Tinto Cao and Tinta Roriz (aka Tempranillo) are commonly blended to make port wine.

There are many other varieties as well but these are main ones.

In Australia the variety that is usually called Touriga is nearly always Touriga Nacional. There is another variety named Touriga Francesa, which is grown by Grey Sands Winery in Northern Tasmania's Tamar Valley. In California wineries are more likely to be using Touriga Francesa when they talk about Touriga.

Unfortunately fortified wines are going out of fashion, and international naming rules which prevent Australian winemakers from calling fortified red wines "Port" are not helping.

But Touriga also makes good table wines.

The strong flavours of this variety can be captured in table wines. The Portuguese use it for this purpose in several DOC regions, most often blended with other varieties.

Many of the Australian wineries listed below use Touriga mostly in blends to make table wines. Yarra Yering have made a Touriga dominant blend for many years under the label Dry Red No 3. This is a top end wine retailing at up to $100.

In more recent years Touriga is gaining popularity with innovative winemakers such as Steve Pannell gaining trophies, medals a critical acclaim.

Wineries in Australia with Touriga

  • 919 Wines Riverland
  • Burge Family Winemakers Barossa Valley
  • Coates Wines McLaren Vale
  • First Drop Barossa Valley
  • Fyffe Field North East Victoria
  • Gapsted Alpine Valleys
  • Grey Sands Northern Tasmania
  • Heslop Wines Mudgee
  • Kaesler Barossa Valley
  • Kangderaar Vineyard Bendigo
  • Mansfield Wines Mudgee
  • Mazza Geographe
  • Myattsfield Vineyard and Winery Perth Hills
  • Old Mill Estate Langhorne Creek
  • Paulmara Estate Barossa Valley
  • Peel Estate Peel
  • Pennyfield Wines Riverland
  • Pennyweight Winery Beechworth
  • Piano Piano Beechworth
  • Pondalowie Bendigo
  • Quattro Mano Barossa Valley
  • Red Edge Heathcote
  • Rivendell Margaret River
  • SC Pannell McLaren Vale
  • Sevenhill Wines Clare Valley
  • St Hallett Barossa Valley
  • Stanton and Killeen Wines Rutherglen
  • Starvedog Lane Adelaide Hills
  • Surveyor's Hill Winery Canberra
  • Three Dark Horses McLaren Vale
  • Toppers Mountain New England
  • Tscharke Barossa Valley
  • Vinterloper Adelaide Hills
  • Wagga Wagga Winery Riverina
  • Windsors Edge Hunter Valley
  • Woodonga Hill Hilltops
  • Yarra Yering Yarra Valley

*Note: Grey Sands uses Touriga Francesa, the others on this list use Touriga Nacional.

Touriga Nacional and Food

As a dry red Touriga goes well with charcoal-grilled meats, or even smoked meats. The earthy flavours of mushroom based dishes call for a well flavoured wine so they are ideal with this variety.

As a sweet white, Port style, combinations of cheese, especially strongly flavoured blue or sharp vintage cheddar and some dried fruit are called for. Maybe try with dark chocolate.

This book includes more suggestions for pairing unusual wine varieties including Touriga with food.

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