This refreshing $10 Portuguese white wine sips like a nectarine spritz

Vale dos Pombos Vinho Verde 2020

(2 stars)

Almost as clear as water, this refreshing blend of loureiro, arinto and trajadura grapes is like a nectarine spritz with a slice of key lime. Moderate in alcohol, it will help you welcome spring with pre-dinner nibbles on the patio. The same producer also makes a tasty rosé. Alcohol by volume: 9.5 percent. BW: 425 grams (Light).

Imported by Red Wolf Imports, distributed by Global Wines of Maryland: Available in the District at Calvert Woodley, Chacho, D’Vines, Exotic Wine & Spirits, LeDroit Park Market, Metro Wine & Spirits, Oasis Gourmet Deli, Old City Market and Oven, Sara’s Market, Serv-U Liquors, Sherry’s Fine Wine & Spirits, Sohal Wine and Spirit, Streets Market & Cafe (various locations), U First Mart, U Street Wine & Beer, Union Kitchen Grocery (various locations), Verified Wines & Fine Spirits, Wardman Wines, Wine & Butter. Available in Maryland at 6-Twelve Convenient Mart in Darnestown, Absolutely Wine or Spirits, Iron Bridge Wine Co. in Columbia; the Beer & Wine Cellar, Beer & Wine International, Belby Discount Beer & Wine, Gilly’s Craft Beer & Fine Wine, Grosvenor Market, Pour Vino N’ Hops, Rollins Beer-Wine-Deli, T&T Wine Shop, Village Beer & Fine Wine in Rockville; Bradley Food & Beverage, Capital Beer & Wine, Georgetown Square Wine and Beer, Lance’s Beer & Wine in Bethesda; Catonsville Discount Liquors in Catonsville; Crestmount Wine & Spirits in Jessup; Downtown Crown Wine and Beer,, Vine Alley in Gaithersburg; Friendship Gourmet Market in Chevy Chase; Greenbelt Co-Op in Greenbelt; Hops & Vines in Odenton; the Manor at Silo Falls in Brookeville; M&L Canton Discount Liquors in Canton; Pennyroyal Station in Mount Rainier, Preserve Wine & Spirits in Hanover; Putty Hill Liquors in Baltimore; Takoma Beverage Co. in Takoma Park; Upcounty Fine Wine & Beer in Clarksburg; Wine Bin in Ellicott City.

Montecappone Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi Classico 2020

(2.5 stars)

Made in a non-oxidative style, this verdicchio is fresh and lively, with aromas of peach blossoms and wild herbs. Delicious by itself, it is an excellent partner to lighter pasta, shellfish or other seafood dishes. ABV: 12.5 percent. BW: 490 grams (Light).

Imported by Banville Wine Merchants, distributed in the District and Virginia by Banville, in Maryland by Artisans & Vines: Available in the District at A. Litteri, Chevy Chase Wine & Spirits, Grand Cata (Shaw), Magruder’s, Radici, Rodman’s, Toscana Market, Wagshal’s Deli. Available in Maryland at Bradley Food & Beverage in Bethesda; Downtown Crown Wine and Beer in Gaithersburg; Knowles Station Wine & Co. in Kensington. Available in Virginia at Ashburn Wine Shop in Ashburn; Dominion Wine and Beer in Falls Church.

Montecappone Rosso Piceno 2020

(3 stars)

Whoa. The label describes this savory blend of montepulciano and sangiovese as “a typical Italian wine.” I don’t know if any wine could be called typical in a country that offers such variety, but I do wish there were more wines like this one in the world. Rich and ripe, savory with flavors of dark cherries, berries and chocolate, this is a great red for pizza or grilled meats. As a friend of mine is fond of saying, “This wine is stupid good.” ABV: 14.5 percent. BW: 415 grams (Light).

Imported by Banville Wine Merchants, distributed in the District and Virginia by Banville, in Maryland by Artisans & Vines: Available in the District at A. Litteri, Grand Cata (Shaw), Magruder’s, Radici, Rodman’s, Toscana Market. Available in Maryland at Downtown Crown Wine and Beer in Gaithersburg. Available in Virginia at Arrowine and Cheese in Arlington; Ashburn Wine Shop in Ashburn; Dominion Wine and Beer in Falls Church.

Luis Seabra Vinhos Xisto Ilimitado Branco 2020

(3 stars)

White wines (branco) are rare in the Douro Valley, which is devoted to fortified port and dry red blends. At higher altitudes and grown with care, the Douro’s schist soils can produce taut, focused whites that seem to express the spirit of rock itself. Luis Seabra is trying to bring us that expression of the Douro in all his wines, through minimalist winemaking and low or no sulfur additions. This branco is a blend of rabigato, godello, codega and viosinho grape varieties. ABV: 12 percent. BW: 475 grams (Light).

Imported by Olé & Obrigado; distributed in the District and Maryland by Bacchus, in Virginia by Salveto: Available in the District at Ace Beverage, Albi, Bourbon Steak, Grand Cata (Shaw), Magruder’s, Pearson’s, Rumi’s Kitchen, Schneider’s of Capitol Hill, St. Vincent Wine, Verified Wines & Fine Spirits, Yardbird. Available in Maryland at French Paradox in Stevenson; Uncorked in Towson; Wine Source in Baltimore. Available in Virginia at Cafe Frank, Tavola, Wine Guild of Charlottesville, Wine Warehouse in Charlottesville; Crudo Nudo in Norfolk; Dominion Wine and Beer in Falls Church; Libbie Market, Red Salt, Second Bottle in Richmond; Unwined (King Street, Belleview) in Alexandria.

Viticoltori Storici Amarone della Valpolicella 2018

(3 stars)

Amarone is made in the appassimento method, in which grapes are partially dried before pressing and fermentation to concentrate the color and flavors of the wine. The result is a deep purple wine with considerable heft and power. Pair this with boldly flavored meat or pasta dishes. If you can afford to age some bottles for a few years, it will reward your patience. ABV: 15 percent. BW: 650 grams (Average).

Imported by Caput Mundi Wine Import, distributed by Impero: Available in the District at A. Litteri, Batch 13, New H Wine & Spirits, Rodman’s, Salumeria 2703, Salumeria NoMa. Available in Maryland at CuVino Trattoria Pizza Enoteca in Timonium; Di Pasquale’s Marketplace in Baltimore; District East, Orion Wine & Spirits, Spin the Bottle Wine Co. in Frederick; Downtown Crown Wine and Beer,, Gemelli’s Italian Market in Gaithersburg; Edgewater Liquors in Edgewater; Fenwick Beer & Wine in Silver Spring; Giolitti Delicatessen in Annapolis; Town Center Market in Riverdale Park. Available in Virginia at Bon Vivant in Smithfield; Branch & Vine, Oxford Cellars, Strawberry Street Market, Yellow Umbrella Provisions in Richmond; Dolce Vita in Fairfax; Gvino Enoteca in Leesburg; the Italian Store (Lyon Village, Westover), Pentagon City Wine in Arlington; Marchese Italian Market, Yiannis Wine Shop in Virginia Beach; Market 2 Market in Alexandria; Sal’s by Victor, Wine Seller in Williamsburg; Vienna Vintner in Vienna; the Wine Attic in Clifton; WineStyles in Montclair.

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