To Vilamoura in the Algarve to show Pedra Basta to the Algarve Wine Society. I hadn’t been to the central part of the Algarve for fifteen years or more so I was struck by the all the changes than have taken place. Vilamoura is a high-rise new town that merges almost imperceptibly with nearby Quarteira. Nearly all feeling of being in Portugal is lost. The tasting took place at a five star hotel in Vila Sol, a quiet golfing suburb in the pine trees. I presented Pedra Basta 2007 as well as cask samples of our 2008 for the first time. Whereas the 2007 need time to open up and I fear was not showing at its best even by the end of the night, the 2008 looked gorgeous, full of vibrant fruit. The audience were mostly English ex-patriots and I met some great characters including a lady who opened the first French restaurant in Albufeira in the mid-1960s before Faro airport had been built. She regaled me with recollections of the place and looking at it now her story seems to belong to pre-history even though it was only 45 years ago. The past is a foreign country...
19 - 20 An outstanding wine (*****)
17 – 18 An excellent wine in its class, highly recommended (****)
15 - 16 A good wine, with much to recommend it (***)
13 - 14 An enjoyable but simple, straightforward wine (**)
10 – 12 A very ordinary wine without faults but with no great merit (*)
8 - 10 Disagreeable (no stars)
Below 8 Faulty