Touriga Nacional is a Portuguese red grape variety known for its complex and high quality wines, which are true works of art. In a palette of intense colors, where deep shades of ruby and purple intertwine in harmony, this autochthonous variety has a rich history and tradition in Portugal, originating wines full of personality.
Known for producing full-bodied and aromatic red wines, Touriga Nacional is known worldwide for its distinctive characteristics and versatility in pairings. The sensorial profile of this rich grape stands out for presenting aromas that vary from ripe red fruits, such as blackberries, to delicate floral notes, such as violets, which give the wines elegance and sophistication. In the mouth, the wines have firm and structured tannins, lightly accompanied by a balanced acidity and a persistent finish.
This noble variety is versatile in terms of gastronomy, resulting in harmonization in a wide variety of dishes. Its wines have a strong presence in robust dishes such as red meat, this factor is due to their tannins, which help cut the fat in the meat, while the aromas of ripe fruit complement the flavors. Thus, its striking tannins harmonize perfectly with grilled steaks and roast lamb, where the richness of the meat complements the complexity of flavors, creating a classic pairing.
In addition, its wines harmonize equally well with game dishes, such as wild boar and deer. Wild boar, for example, with its tasty meat and firm texture, brings rich and complex flavors to the palate when paired with this variety, as well as deer meat, which offers intense flavors, making the presence of these wines soften your rusticity and create an elegant dining experience. Game dishes are often enriched with spices and aromatic herbs, creating layers of flavor that are unique and appropriate to accompany a red Touriga Nacional.
In addition to meat, its wines harmonize with various cheeses, especially strong and matured cheeses, such as Roquefort. The slight sweetness of the wine's ripe red fruits contrasts with the earthy notes of the cheese, as well as the acidity of the Touriga Nacional and its firm tannins make for an excellent pairing. For this experience, serving Roquefort cheese at room temperature is ideal for perfectly releasing its aromas and flavors. In addition, experimenting with textures and exploring different ways of pairing cheese with wine will further elevate this experience, pairing it with bread and toast, for example.
Mediterranean cuisine, with its fresh herbs and robust flavors, is also a great choice to accompany a Touriga Nacional. Tomato-based dishes, for example, can enhance the fruity notes of the wine, as well as aromatic herbs, such as thyme and rosemary, can complement the flavors and extend the aromatic palette of the pairing.
Touriga Nacional does not only harmonize with savory dishes, its wines combine perfectly with desserts, especially those rich in dark chocolate and red fruits. This option is not the most used, however, if done correctly, it is capable of revealing an explosion of flavors on the palate. Dark chocolate, with its intensity and bitterness, finds an interesting combination with the complex flavors of the wine. Tannins balance the sweet flavors, while the wine's fruity aromas round out the experience. Thus, cheesecakes and red fruit pies, for example, enhance the flavor of the wine, resulting in a great combination.
The breadth of experiences that this unique variety can offer is remarkable. From meat dishes, cheeses, typical cuisines and even desserts, Touriga Nacional wines provide a true gastronomic experience when well accompanied. In each bottle of this variety, there is a story to be told in a wide variety of options, which perpetuates the art of harmonizing flavors and delights wine lovers with its elegance and sophistication.