Arinto* is a popular green grape grown all over Portugal, appreciated for being prone to keep high levels of acidity also in warm climates.
Apart from high levels of acidity, a young Arinto wine will be rich on notes of apples, lemon and grapefruit. It lends itself to ageing and is then likely to change into more of a stone fruit character. Arinto wines are also known to have mineral notes, especially the ones from its heartland, Bucelas, just outside Lisbon.
You can find nice Arinto wines in many parts of Portugal. The best one’s are said to be those from Bucelas. In many cases, Arinto is blended with for example Antão Vaz, Fernão Pires, and Chardonnay. Blending partners in the Northern region Vinho Verde are for example Loureiro and Trajadura.
Arinto makes a versatile wine and will pair nicely with dressed salads, antipasto, crab, and lobster. You can also try it with grilled white fish fillets. The wine is best served at 8°C/46°F – 10°C/50°F.
Where is it grown?
With its 4.466 ha/11,036 ac, Arinto is the ninth most planted grape variety in Portugal. The plantings
increased with 480 ha/1,186 ac between 2000 and 2010.
The increase has taken place in central Portugal, in the regions Alentejo and Ribatejo et Oeste, and in the north in Beira Interior. In Vinho Verde the plantings decreased with 176 ha/435 ac.
No reports of plantings outside Portugal have been found.
Arinto is an old variety and it was documented more than 300 years ago. It is viewed as being native to Portugal. There is no pedigree reported.
During the second half of the 16th century the white wines from Bucelas were very popular in England, a popularity that was repeated during the Victorian age.
*The name Arinto is also used as synonyms for two other varieties (the Portuguese varieties Loureiro and Malvasia Fina). No documentation has not been found these two varieties having links to the grape presented here.