Vinho de Portugal (Lisbon)
COZ's Pop Tinto
A single-variety Castelão for simple enjoyment
Style COZ's Pop Tinto 2021
Characteristics COZ's Pop Tinto
In the first half of the 2000s, Portugal produced some very original wines. One of those wineries was Quinta dos Cozinheiros, the project where José Mendonça dared to dream of doing things differently, making wines that inspired a whole generation. Sadly this producer died in 2009 in a road accident, but all his achievements are now carried by the winemakers who were once young dreamers who learned from him, like Tiago Teles and Antonio Marques-da-Cruz.
The two winemakers joined forces in 2015 and, with permission from Mendonça’s family, they decided to rent the vineyard north of Lisbon, about 8 km from the coast, where Mendonça harvested the grapes to make Quinta dos Cozinheiros. This is how COZ’s was born, a project that seeks to produce wines that would be “unaltered and fresher than usual for this country”, using native varieties like Baga (red) and Maria Gomes (white). However, their adventure did not stop there, as Teles and Marques-da-Cruz also bought 2 hectares in the Serra de Montejunto (about an hour from Lisbon), where they cultivate a 35-year-old vineyard, on clay-limestone soils, growing Vital (a rare white variety that is only planted in the western regions of Portugal).
All of this work produces some very special wines, like COZ’s Pop Tinto. In particular, this red, a single-variety Castelão, is a lighter and fresher version of the Castelão produced by this couple. COZ’s Pop Tinto undergoes a light three-day maceration and is fermented in whole clusters. Once fermentation is complete, COZ’s Pop Tinto rests for 11 months, where it also undergoes malolactic fermentation.
This chapter is only the beginning of the story. Teles and Marques-da-Cruz are still looking for and acquiring new land. The COZ’s project is more alive than ever, and is one of the essential influences in the new future of the Portuguese wine industry.