By: John Majeski | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/30/2012 | Send Email
The historic fortified town of Monçao, located on the beautiful Río Minho that unwinds along the Spanish border in northwest Portugal, offers a fascinating story of desperate ingenuity and intrepid survival. During the mid-14th century as it was mercilessly besieged by Spanish troops and nearing collapse from repeated assault and starvation, a resourceful woman named Deu-la-Deu Martins asked that all the remaining flour be gathered and baked into loaves of bread which she then hurled from the parapets at the surprised Spaniards. Convinced that the town was in no danger of surrendering anytime soon, the frustrated troops withdrew their long siege, saving Monçao from certain destruction.
The town is still blessed with intimate medieval charm, but today it's better known for its delicious Vinho Verdes than its fabled lady of the loaves. Muralhas de Monçao is named for the granite walls from which those sacrificial loaves were tossed, and when you taste this delicately effervescent, more sophisticated version with its dazzling, complex flavors of lemon zest, summer melon and apricot, with a suave mineral underpinning, you'll have no difficulty tossing a few glasses down yourself.