This has been the estate’s most important label and flagship wine, since it sold its first bottle in 1954, and for which the Herdade has become famous. It is made predominantly from Alicante Bouschet with a small percentage of Trincadeira and vinified in lagares. It is aged in oak and mahogany vats of 5.000 liters capacity for 24 months and only released after further 24 to 36 months in bottle in our air conditioned cellars.
Mouchao is a full, deep coloured wine with its concentration and spiciness of the Alicante Bouschet combined with the elegance of the Trincadeira and a tannic structure which enables the development in bottle for which it is so well known.
The fine, rolling landscape of Portugal’s Alentejo region, set between Lisbon and the Algarve, is dominated by cork forests and olive groves. In the early 19th century, Thomas Reynolds moved here from Oporto, chiefly to become involved in the cork business.
Three generations later, his grandson, John Reynolds, purchased a 900 hectare property with two small rivers running through it - Herdade do Mouchao. In addition to the family’s cork activities, he set about making wine. Vineyards were planted and in 1901 he built a high-ceilinged adobe winery (or “adega”) with white washed walls and a traditional red-tiled roof. A distillery was added to the winery in 1929, where until today Mouchao’s pommace brandy is produced.
During the 1950’s. While the estate continued to produce cork, olives, cereals and to rear pigs and sheep (much as it does today), the wine business began to expand. More vines were planted, the winemaking improved and bottled sales began, replacing the old tradition of wine made purely for bulk sale to local towns and villages.
Following the 1974 revolution, the estate was expropriated and only returned to the family in 1985. Today, the Herdade do Mouchao continues to be run by the descendants of the original family whose cellar and vineyard workers have been with them for generations. The process is, as it always has been, unhurried. The grape varieties are local, picked by hand and foot-trodden.
In the ever-changing world of winemaking, Herdade do Mouchao, remains a traditional, family-run winery.