João Tavares de Pina is a passionate champion of the Dão region, its wines and food. After initial studying viticulture and winemaking at Bordeaux University, João followed this with further study at Villa Real, where he finished a 3 year research project on yeast: selecting yeast from Vinho Verde that is eventually commercialized as QA23 and sold throughout the world. Tavares is a strong proponent of the cooler climate wine styles around Penalva do Castelo and, in particular, the Jaen grape (Spain’s Mencia). His wines are true to the cooler, more elevated climates surrounding Penalva do Castelo where he plants Jaen, Rufete, Touriga Nacional,Tinta Pinheira (reds) and Encruzado, Serceal, Bical, Arinto, Malvasia Fina (whites) in a currently expanding 3 hectare vineyard.
Dão was often described in the 19th Century as the ‘Bourgogne of the South’ and was a preferred wine of Portugal’s kings stretching back deeply into the nation’s early history. Quinta da Boa Vista vineyards grow between 500 and 550 meters between elevation and river driven humidity, wide diurnal temperature shifts (20º+) Due to the low altitude to the west, the weather is influenced by the Atlantic that brings regular rain, creating one of the dampest viniculture regions in our country and the world. On the other hand, the climate is also greatly influenced by its relative distance from the ocean, making the winter temperatures lower than normal and the summer temperatures warmer. Soil at Quinta da Boa Vista is composed of slate and granite at great depth with high levels of clay, which is uncommon to the Dao region. This soil provides good drainage and excellent water storage, limiting the period of hydro stress during the final phase of maturity.
No-till, grass cover cropping is practiced and although the vineyards are not certified organic, they are farmed under organic and sustainable practices. Given the winery is covered in photovoltaic cells; making Quinta da Boa Vista a net exporter of electricity its promoted as carbon neutral. The vineyard's floor is covered with autochthonous flowers such as chamomile, clover, serradella, lavender and some different types of grasses which act as natural defense for vines against fungi and any other disease. Occasionally in some years is sulphur and copper used in the vines and cropping is naturally at or under 2 ton/ha as Tavares believes his vines should find their own harmony and carry their own natural weight in grapes with low producers having more ripeness and others less, thus creating a greater complexity and minerality.