In a nutshell: Pale and delicate in colour this Madeira is wonderfully fresh and clean and persistent.
The lowdown: After pressing the fermentation is halted by fortification at the right point to achieve the desired degree of sweetness or dryness. It then undergoes a maturation process unique to Madeira - the Estufa system. During a period of around 3 months the wine is gradually heated to over 40°C before being allowed to cool. After this it's aged for five years in oak before bottling to mature and develop character. Gold in colour and fruity on the palate there's plenty of nutty character here and pleasingly clean acidity.
When to drink: Just slightly chilled it makes a perfect aperitif alongside nibbles like salted cashews or almonds.
Based in the island's capital Funchal, Pereira d'Oliveira is one of the great old Madeira houses and dates back to 1820 when it was founded by Joao Pereira d'Oilvera. Today it is run by fifth generation descendents Anibal, Luis and Felipe d'Oliveira.
They are one of the few houses to survive from the pre-phylloxera period and have mainited a stock of old and rare wines dating well back into the 1800s. These are left to mature slowly in 600 litre pipes and are bottled to order when required.
With two centuries of accumulated experience of wine making their aim is to produce wines of exceptional balance that characterised by aromatic complexity while remaining fresh and well textured.