Herdade da Maroteira is an agricultural property belonging to one of the Anglo-Portuguese families, established in the Alentejo Region, for more than five generations. It is located 7.5 km from the center of Redondo and 48 km from the border. It is half-walled with the São Paulo convent, a local accommodation. There’s the bone saw on one side and the round on the other.

The Herdade da Maroteira has about 540 hectares, to our surprise, most of it, 480 hectares, are of montado, coriander and holm oak. It should be noted that out of curiosity, 35% of montado of the world is in Portugal.

The herdade also work as local accommodation, with 3 houses all equipped, a swimming pool and not having a restaurant, the they can, however, arrange meals from outside.

It also has an area for events, wine tastings and seating capacity for events such as weddings.

It has a small olive grove, but still does not make its own olive oil, sending the olive to the Herdade do Zambujeiro, where they make their olive oil, but with the Zambujeiro label.
It also has cattle, like cows and sheep.

After about two hours, guided by the accurate GPS, we are welcomed by José Inverno, with an archeology degree and also tourist animator, natural from Herdade do Freixo in Alentejo and who is in charge of the tours. Unfortunately, due to the finishing of the new wine cellar, Anthony Doody can not receive us, having promised us a future visit to meet the new Wine Cellar and the usual interview.

The dogs of the family, Migas, Sinbad and Cabidela make their appearance guided maybe by dog’s curiosity. Jose Winter, with his natural sympathy, offers us a coffee, which after the trip felt real nice like “ginjas” … We then went on the jeep tour, with the comments by José Inverno. he explains to us that there are 5 sections of cork oaks, each one with a different extraction, and that there are cork oaks from 150 to 300 years old, extraordinary.

There are 3 types of cork, the good, the virgin 10 times more valuable and the small bits. There are about 40 tons, the amount of cork per year in the farm.

We confirmed what we already had idea, it takes 9 years to extract the cork. An other interesting curiosity, another way of income of the herdade, black pigs creation, other people take the animals to the herdade to feed on acorn and for each increase of weight the herdade is remunerated for this, without great work and only counting the animals daily and leaving them at ease.

In this case, we are told that the acorns of holm oaks are more nourishing than cork oaks, since cork oaks are weakened by the loss of cork.

After a visit to the montado and a pause by the farm’s well to drink a fresh water, through an emblematic cante in the Alentejo, we began to be curious, but where are the vines … Jose Winter, tells us to be calm and then we started the journey with great curiosity, since we did not know for example that the Herdade da Maroteira had no wine cellar of its own.

The herdade da maroteira does not have a wine cellar, they’re finishing a new one in the Redondo region, until now they make the wines in Fita Preta’s wine cellar, whose owner is António Maçanita, oenologist of the Herdade da Maroteira. Maçanita knowing that in 2004 the grapes would be sold in bulk, as they were until then, went to Herdade do Esporão for example, asked to do analyzes and pleased with the results, told Philip Mollet, producer, that he would be willing to buy the vineyards and make wine himself. Philip Mollet beed on him, and that’s how the red wine Cem Reis Reserva came out in 2005.

The vineyards were originally planted in 2000, with 2 hectares of Syrah planted, namely a parcel used for the emblematic wine of this house, Cem Reis, later in 2003, the grape varieties, Aragonez, Alicante Boschet and Touriga Nacional emerged. In all, 14, 5 hectares of vineyard. The Touriga Nacional wine with vines in Evoramonte is a partnership with the Dutch judge of Evoramonte. There are also other vineyards, Vognier, Antão Vaz, Arinto, in Montemor, leased or bought. A short time ago they planted another 3 hectares of Alicante bouschet.

At the production level, the Dez Tostões has about 60,000 bottles, the Cem reis 12,000 to 15,000 and this year 2016, had about 10,000.

In the vineyards the rainy method prevails, the vines are not watered which leads that the deeper roots must search of water.

As regards of the Cem Reis, this results from the junction of the oldest, granite, rocky Syrah vineyard with the other, more sandy portion that gives it a different acidity. The Mil Reis harvest of 2013, was born from the oldest vineyard.

And finally, we finally satisfied our curiosity about the vineyards and it’s time to return, ready for lunch, in the Restaurant Serra de Óssea, in Aldeia da Serra, with the herdade’s wine tasting wines, sympathetically offered by Anthony Doody.

Final Notes:

  1. Excellent late afternoon on a July day, a bit atypical in the Alentejo, not too hot, about 25 degrees, great for a walk.
  2. Overall surprise, Herdade da Maroteira does not have its own wine cellar at the moment, the new and own cellar in the Redondo is being finalized.
  3. Jose Winter’s sympathy, very communicative, made us forget the little discouragement for not having the presence of Anthony Doody, to whom we wanted to do the usual partners interview.
  4. End of the visit to the Herdade, with the panorama of the lodging and integrated swimming pool that leaves us with the certainty of being a very pleasant place not only to taste excellent wines but also to pass a beautiful days of vacations.

W4P (JUL 2018)