The purchase of Casa Agricola José de Sousa Rosado Fernandes in 1986 saw a long-held dream become reality for José Maria da Fonseca: to produce Alentejo wine using traditional winemaking methods from an estate with history and prestige. This property won on both counts, having produced wine since at least 1878 and having one absolutely legendary vintage - the José de Sousa 1940.

The Monte do Ribeira estate that contains the vineyard lies alongside the road into Monsaraz and has an area of 120 hectares, of which 72 are planted with vines.
The vines have always been grown in granite-based soil with excellent exposure to the sun; some were even planted by the hand of José de Sousa himself, particularly in the early 1950s when he concentrated on red grape varieties Trincadeira, Aragonez and Grand Noir. We started replanting the vineyard in 1988 and completed the task at the end of the 1990s.


The Winemaker

Domingos Soares Franco, Winemaker and Vice President, studied viticulture and oenology in Davis, California. After graduation he joined the company in the 1980s and, being one of the most innovative of the new generation of Portuguese winemakers, brought significant changes to the style of his wines.


The Winery

The winery stands in the centre of the small town of Reguengos de Monsaraz, located in the heart of the Alentejo province in southern Portugal. It combines tradition and history with state-of the-art technology, and it is exactly this blend of old and new – a constant in the long history of José Maria da Fonseca – that makes José de Sousa so sublime, a blend of skilled craftsmanship and modernity.

Thus, you will encounter a traditional winery (built below ground level to maintain cool temperatures year-round), with two lagares (open tanks) for treading the grapes and 114 clay amphorae for fermentation, and another modern winery equipped with 44 stainless steel tanks and all the technology indispensable for making red wine.


Vintage Information

Classification: Vinho Regional Alentejano
Region: Reguengos, Alentejo
Grape Varieties: Grand Noir (47%), Trincadeira (33%) and Aragonez (20%)
Vineyard Area: 20 ha
Type of Soil: Granitic
Wine Production: 59.500 litres


Tasting Notes

Colour: Colour ruby
Aroma: Dates, tobacco leaf, mineral, violets, plums, figs and vanilla.
Palate: Fruity with soft tannins.
Final Palate: Medium

Vinification: Small portion in clay pots and the rest in stainless still tanks at temperature of 28ºC.

Ageing: 8 months in new American and French oak.

Date of bottling: December 2012



Alcohol: 14.4%
Total Acidity: 5 gr/l as tartaric acid
pH: 3.35

Serving suggestions: Serve at 14ºC and consume at 16ºC with game and cheese.

Storage: The bottles should be laid down at a temperature of 12oC and 60% of humidity.

Shelf life: 4 years after bottling

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Vinhos do Alentejo 2019