Another wine enjoyed over dinner in Avis, and another quasi-local one as well, from Alentejo. Came across as lighter than the 2003 Mouchão, though the same ABV, and a little less complex & concentrated. Nevertheless another very pleasant wine! Mid ruby colour. Aromas of vanilla & red fruit, opening into pepper spice & sweet spice, but also with a lifted aromatic note – mint, or maybe sage? On the palate, medium bodied, with slightly less-well-crafted tannins than the Mouchão, but nevertheless not prominent. Fair concentration of red fruit flavour, but a distinctively spicy, peppery finish. Quite long. Pretty good. Shame about Merlin.