“Projectos Wines” include all the wines under the “Niepoort Projectos“ label, which are experiences made in Douro or Vila Nova de Gaia, but also wines made in partnership with other producers such as Doda, with Alvaro de Castro from the Dão region, OmLet produced in Douro with the Spanish winemaker Telmo Rodriguez; Ultreia produced in Douro with the Spanish winemaker Raul Perez; Muhr van der Niepoort wines, produced in Austria together with Dorli Muhr, Cape Charme and Cape Fortified produced in South Africa with Eben or Ladredo from Ribeira Sacra (Spain).
Projectos (which is the Portuguese word for projects) are experiences, very small productions, where Niepoort tries different paths to create other wines, sharing the results with the wine lovers. The first creations are uncommon for Douro: Chardonnay, Colheita Tardia (late harvest) and Riesling.
Since the beginning, in 1917, this wine was designed to be a traditional blend of two regions, Dão and Bairrada. From Dão, the grape is Touriga Nacional and from Bairrada, Baga.
The grapes are fermented separately. The ageing takes up to 12 months in 50% new
300L french barrels and 50% used barrels (2nd year). The wine is usually released 4 years after bottling.
Inspired by an old idea of his father Rolf Niepoort, Dirk joined Alvaro de Castro to blend the “perfect wine”. The innovative approach was the union of two different wine regions Dão and Douro. The blend of the different characteristics created an impressive wine with the freshness and elegance of Dão and the concentration and fine tannins of Douro.
The first Dado was born in 2000, a blend of 50% Dão wine, from Quinta da Pellada and 50% Douro wine, from Quinta do Carril. Making the wine was actually the easiest part of the process. The challenge was to overcome all the legal problems related to the label approval. As a table wine the label could not mention: region involved , year of harvest, year of bottling, or the history of the wine...
Nevertheless, the result was a lovely perfumed wine, with raspberry fruit aromas, richness and freshness on the palate, firm tannins, bright acidity, and with a creamy feel to the whole.
Dado was produced in 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004 and the distribution was limited to Portugal. Doda started in 2005 for the world market.
Dócil, called Girosol in previous editions, results from the will of producing a Vinho Verde wine that reflects its region, which is balanced and complete, basing its entire vinification in the Loureiro grape variety and in a vibrant acidity. This wine, coming from its original location, the Valley of Lima, was born in vines grown on granite soil. The aromatic profile of Loureiro grape variety is evident with a predominance of fresh floral aromas.
Girosol was produced in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009. Dócil was produced in 2010.
Julia Melo Kemper, a lawyer by profession, has always been passionate about the organic issues. A few years ago, she had the oportunity to restore the family’s vineyards, in the Dão region, and decided it was going to be organic. With the help of the company Vines and Wines she replanted the vineyard according to an organic orientation. Dirk Niepoort, a longtime friend of the Kemper family, was impressed with the project, for its quality and originality, and therefore promptly volunteered to present and distribute their wines.
The constant search and willingness to learn more and more, led Dirk Niepoort and Luis Seabra to the beautiful and impressive Spanish wine region of Ribera Sacra. With the help of a Spanish winemaker who knew well the region, a traditional vineyard, on the slopes of River Sil, called Ladredo, was found, planted in small terraces, with stone walls and east exposure.
Ladredo was produced in 2008 and 2009.
Niepoort joined Equipo Navazos to elaborate a white wine, made 100% with grapes of Palomino Fino, from one of the historic Albariza vineyards, in the Spanish region of Jerez de La Frontera. The wine was produced, following the same rigorous criteria of the best winemaking techniques of two centuries ago, with grapes being fermented in bult, only with indigenous yeasts, and aged without fortification, under veil, for four to five months.
Telmo Rodriguez is a well known Spanish winemaker and producer, with experience in different wine regions of Spain. OmLet, joines the interest of Telmo in making a wine in Portugal, particularly in the Douro Valley and our permanent pursuit to try different approaches to different terroirs. The idea was to let Telmo’s gentle vinification technique to be present, so we used grapes from two old vineyards planted in Covas valley, in high altitude with Este facing exposure.
Omlet was produced in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009.
Raul Perez is a study in contrasts. Curious. Courteous. Pensive. Gregarious. He is intensely serious about his work, but doesn't take himself too seriously. He is deeply committed to getting it right, but entirely unafraid of failure. He believes that wine is made in the vineyard, but is undeterred from trying a multitude of strategies to find that vineyard's voice.
As a winemaker, Raul's mission is to capture all potential from each site he works with. There are many talents who grew up with vines, who innovate, who study intently the world's wines and their making. Raul has this and more; an uncanny knack for knowing what a vineyard needs and how to treat that vineyard's grapes once in the winery to achieve their greatest expression.
From the friendship with Dirk and Luis the DOURO Ultreia was produced expressing the terroir of Douro and also Raúls character.
Douro Ultreia was produced 2008 and 2009.