The wines of Douro Family Estates   
A new collaborative venture in Portugal's Douro, involving
Quinta do Soque, Quinta das Bajancas, Brites de Aguiar and Quinta dos Poços

This is an interesting collaboration, beginning in 2009, of four wine producers from Portugal’s Douro Valley. The four - Quinta do Soque, Quinta das Bajancas, Brites de Aguiar and Quinta dos Poços – are collaborating in both marketing and winemaking, in order to achieve a critical mass so they can have more of a presence on export markets.

The four are equal partners in their common brand, DFE, which has three tiers: Classic, Premium and Signature. These wines aim at offering good value for money, and the grapes for them are sourced from the 92 hectares of vineyard the partners own. They also produce estate wines under their own names.

Soque, Bajancas and Brites Aguiar are situated in the Cima Corgo sub-region, while Poços is situated in the Baixo Corgo sub-region.

The four estates share a common enology team headed by António Rosas and Pedro Sequeira, called 2PR.

The wines:

DFE (Douro Family Estates)

DFE is the collaborative banner under which wines from the four estates are blended and then bottled together.

DFE Classic White 2008 Douro
12% alcohol. Very fresh mineralic nose with taut citrus fruit. Precise and bright on the palate with citrus, grapefruit pith and mineral notes. Fresh and clean with lovely flavour. 89/100

DFE Signature 2007 Douro
15.5% alcohol. Sweet, lush, aromatic nose with liqueur-like dark cherry and blackberry fruit, and a minerally, spicy edge. The palate is rich and sweet with some alcohol evident and also nice grippy tannins, as well as spicy, mineral notes. Very attractive, if a bit alcoholic. 89/100

back to top

Brites Aguiar


The vineyards of Brites Aguiar border the Rio Torto at Várzea de Trevões, and the property is run by three siblings, Lúcia, Paulo and António Brites Aguiar. It’s 200 hectares in all, with 45 hectares of vines and also cherry orchards, sweet chestnut trees, walnut trees and woods making up the remainder.

The vineyards were replanted and modernised in 2003/4, and now consist of 17 ha Touriga Franca, 12 ha Tinta Roriz, 7 ha Touriga Nacional, 3 ha Tinta Amarela, 3 ha Tinta Barroca and 1 ha Tinta Francisca.

The winery was built in 2003, and since 2004 oenology consultant firm 2PR have been involved.

Brites Aguiar is the flagship wine, and other wines are made under the Bafarela label.

Brites Aguiar Grande Reserve 2008 Douro
14.5% alcohol. Very sweet, lush, perfumed liqueur-like dark cherry and black plum nose, with some subtle spicy notes. The palate is ripe and silky with sweet dark fruits and subtle spiciness. Quite pure and lush. A very modern style but balanced. 92/100

Brites Aguiar 2007 Douro
15.5% alcohol. Dense and quite rich with bold blackberry and dark cherry fruit combining with spicy new oak. Very rich and full with nice concentration, rich fruit and strong oak influence. A bold, ripe, modern wine with plenty of ripeness, and it may develop well. At the moment a bit oaky. 90/100

Bafarela 2006 Douro
13% alcohol. Lovely aromatic sweet cherry fruit on the nose. Seductively perfumed with hints of spice and minerals. The palate is sweet and quite lush with lovely minerally, spicy definition. Subtly gravelly edge to the finish. 89/100

Bafarela Reserva 2008 Douro
14% alcohol. Tight, reductive nose with some roasted, spicy matchstick notes. The palate is fresh, spicy and quite tannic with fresh berry fruits, more red than black in profile. Fresh with nice potential for development. Savoury and reductive now. 88/100

Bafarela 17 Grande Reserva 2008 Douro
17% alcohol. Lush, sweet, pure nose with ripe raspberry and cherry fruit. Rich and smooth. The palate has very ripe, smooth blackberry and raspberry fruit with some warmth. Finishes spicy. A bit like a high quality, dry Port. 90/100

back to top

Quinta das Bajancas

António Alfredo Lamas’ property is located in Trevões. After a spell working in Lisbon, he returned home and planted 4 hectares of vines in 1994, naming the parcel Bajancas. Reds are Touriga Nacional, Tinta Roriz, Touriga Franca, Tinta Francisca and Tinta Amarela, while whites are Rabigato, Gouveio, Malvasia Fina and Códega do Larinho. Lamas also uses some ancient Tinta Francisca vines that existed on the estate in ‘pilheiros’ (a centuries-old method in which the vines are grown in holes in schist walls).

A second phase of planting involved 8 hectares in 2000. The high altitude of the 70 hectare estate (averaging 500 metres) helps to make fresh wines with good acidity.

It wasn’t until 2004 that Lamas produced the first Quinta das Bajancas wines, in partnership with 2PR.

Bajancas Branco 2009 Douro
13.5% alcohol. Modern-style packaging is effective. A blend of Rabigato, Malvasia Fina and Gouveio. Crisp, fresh and fruity with a hint of grapiness. Some lemon fruit. Nicely fresh with pure fruit and a hint of herbiness. An appealing unoaked style. 87/100

Bajancas Private Selection Branco 2008 Douro
13% alcohol. Lovely fresh nose with herby, citrus, lemon, floral notes as well as subtle toast and vanilla oak notes. The palate has bright fruit and a savoury, woody note. Very lively and youthful with high acidity, but will need some time for the oak to settle down. 86/100

Bajancas Tinto 2006 Douro
14% alcohol. Modern packaging. Midweight and quite elegant with some vanilla oak and sweet plum and cherry fruit. Fresh palate with nice bright fruit (berries, red cherries) and good acidity, as well as some grippy tannins. 87/100

back to top

Quinta dos Poços


Located in the Baixo Corgo subregion of the Douro, this is an old estate with vineyards surrounding an 18 th century manor house. There are 21 hectares of vineyards, all of which are red, with the following varietal make-up: Touriga Franca (21%), Touriga Nacional (24%), Tinta Roriz (20%), Tinta Barroca (12%), Tinto Cão (5%), Donzelinho (3%), Tinta Francisca (4%), Sousão (7%) and Rufete (4%).

There’s a winery with six granite lagares, and three different reds are made: Quintas dos Poços Colheita, Quinta dos Poços Reserva and Quinta dos Poços Grande Reserva.

Quinta dos Poços Reserva 2005 Douro
Sweet, slightly baked nose of cherry and plum fruit, with caramel and vanilla notes. Midweight with some cherry and spice notes on the palate. Warm. Some elegance, but made in an oxidative style. A little Burgundian. 85/100

Quinta dos Poços Colheita 2005 Douro
14% alcohol. Cherry and herb nose with a lifted, slightly volatile, appley edge. The palate shows fresh savoury cherry and plum fruit with a bit of spice. Juicy and bright in a midweight style. 82/100

Quinta dos Poços Grand Reserva 2005 Douro
15% alcohol. Sweet, aromatic nose with earthy, spicy, mineral notes and slightly baked sweet fruit. It has alcoholic warmth but there’s some nice minerality here. Finishes with savoury spiciness. A terroir-ish wine but too alcoholic. 88/100

back to top

Quinta do Soque


A 20 hectare estate on the left bank of the Torto, with 17 hectares under vine. It has been owned by the Vicente family for 20 years, and the vineyards were replanted and modernized in the early 1990s. A new winery was built in 2005.

Quinta do Soque Reserva 2005 Douro
14% Some development here. Sweet ripe cherry fruit with some firm spiciness and coconut oak notes, supported by gravelly minerality. Quite sophisticated with real elegance. The oak is prominent but has integrated quite well. 90/100

Quinta do Soque Vinhas Velhas 2007 Douro
15% alcohol. Sweet, lush dark fruits nose. Aromatic and pure with some warm, spicy, coconutty oak notes. The palate is dense and sweet with powerful, rich, smooth blackberry and dark cherry fruit, alongside some oak influence. Modern styled and rich. 89/100

Quinta do Soque 2007 Douro
14% alcohol. Spicy and sweetly fruited with attractive cherry, plum and blackberry fruit with nice texture and some richness, as well as a hint of savoury earthiness. Nice depth of flavour and also some Douro terroir. Quite elegant. 90/100

Wines tasted 08/10  
Find these wines with

Back to top