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Wine with Verdelho grapes

by | Jun 16, 2017

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The Verdelho grape variety was said to have been widely cultivated in the Madeira region during the seventeenth century.
Verdelho grapes

This white grape variety was also the most planted during the 19th Century, but lost its ground because of the more trustworthy Tinta Negra Mole.

Verdelho became popular in the Portugal islands specifically in Madeira and Azores as a base wine for fortified wines.

The Verdelho grapes are also found in the Douro Valley where they are sometimes confused with Gouveio grape and also in Argentina.

It has been successful in the vineyards of Australia specifically in the wine regions of South Burnett, Queensland, Hunter Region, Lunghome Creek, Cowra and the Swan Valley.


Verdelho has customarily been one of most widely planted and famous white grape varieties on the small island of Madeira since vines were first planted there in the 15th century.

Maybe, they may have been taken to the island from the mainland when it was first populated, however, Verdelho was seldom found on the mainland that is why it may absolutely originated from Madeira.

DNA profiling showed that Verdelho Roxo is a red-berried colored mutation of Verdelho grape variety while Verdelho Tinto is a unique variety from the Minho region that is not cultured anymore.

In some theoretical explanations, Verdelho of Madeira is similar to the Sicilian grape variety, Verdicchio; introduced by Infante D. Henrique to the island in 1420.

Characteristics of Verdelho grape

Verdelho grape variety is a delicate, vigorous vine that produces small bunches of tiny oval berries with a high skin to juice percentage.

The skins can be thick and tasty hard when eaten and because grapes ripen early, the vines are vulnerable to botrytis bunch rot as well as coulure, downy and powdery mildew. During spring, they can also be exposed to frost.

Wine grape varieties

Characteristics of Verdelho Wines

The Verdelho wines are known to be high in acidity when aged, but when drunk younger it possesses fruitier flavor than Madeiras.

This grape variety’s aromatic profile is crisp sometimes with leafy or spicy accents. It normally creates rich wines with ripe apricot and stone fruit aromas as well as citrus and tropical fruits.

Food Pairings

Since Verdelho possesses fruity flavor, it is best to be paired with different food types such as fish tacos with cilantro, seared prawns with chili and smoked ham.

Great wines are to pair with great foods!

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Michael Bredahl

Michael Bredahl

Wine Writer

Michael is an online enthusiast, with a lot of knowledge about online marketing. Traveling around the world to hunt for the perfect wine. Latest on Sicily, where Etna has a huge impact on the taste, which is strong with a bitter aftertaste for the youngest wines, but older wines are fantastic. Drinking wine, and writing about them, are one the passions. Remember to drink responsibly 🙂

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