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Symington Family Estates and Anselmo Mendes Create New Joint Venture in Vinho Verde


The Symington Family and Anselmo Mendes Create a New Joint Venture to Distribute the Wines From the Historic Vinho Verde Estate – Casa de Rodas – and the Renowned Contacto Brand

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Apr. 3, 2024 – The Symington family recently acquired an estate in the prestigious Monção and Melgaço sub-region of the  Vinho Verde DOC in northern Portugal – named Casa de Rodas. The Symingtons will produce a range of  Alvarinho wines from the 27.5 hectare vineyard with legendary Vinho Verde producer Anselmo Mendes as winemaker. The two families have now decided to create a new company, with equal shareholding, to  distribute the wines produced from the property – the first of which will be made this year.  

The joint venture will also acquire the renowned Vinho Verde brand, Contacto, produced by Anselmo  Mendes. The 100% Alvarinho wine has seen enormous success in Portugal and internationally, and both  families believe it has great potential for further development.

Anselmo Mendes commented, “Monção-Melgaço has become one of the world-class white wine-producing  regions over the last few years. Being from Monção myself, I am very proud of playing a part in this success. This partnership with the Symington family makes me very pleased because together we will  create greater value for our brands and contribute to the wider recognition of Monção-Melgaço wines.  Both our families share a passion for our own vineyards and select the best terroirs carefully. My family owns three properties in Monção-Melgaço with a total of 60 hectares planted with Alvarinho, with Quinta  da Torre being the largest viticultural area in the region.”  

Rupert Symington, CEO of Symington Family Estates, commented, “It is with great pleasure that we make this announcement today. We believe in establishing long-term partnerships with people who share the  same vision, values and standards as us and we are proud to be working with Anselmo Mendes and his  family. Anselmo has rightly earned his reputation as one of the most accomplished winemakers in Portugal and as a pioneer in the Vinho Verde region.” 

Referring to the Contacto brand, Rupert Symington added, “Contacto is a great example of an excellent Vinho Verde produced entirely from the Alvarinho grape variety. It has good distribution in Portugal and  other international markets. We believe that premium Vinho Verde has enormous potential in some key  export markets, and we plan to use our international distribution network to help to expand the sales of a  wine that we consider to be the most famous premium white wine in Portugal.” 

Commenting on Symington Family Estates’ ambition for still wines, Rupert Symington stated, “We believe  that Portugal has huge untapped potential as a wine-producing country. We are determined to be at the  forefront of strengthening its reputation, particularly in export markets where many Portuguese wines are still under-represented. We aim to be a leading premium producer in every region that we operate and we  are confident that these new investments in top quality Vinho Verde fill an important gap in our portfolio.”




The Symingtons of Scottish, English and Portuguese descent have been port producers in northern Portugal since 1882.  For five generations they have combined their passion for producing fine wines and ports with a deep commitment to the  region’s land and people. Today, ten Symingtons work across their four port houses: Graham’s, Cockburn’s, Dow’s and Warre’s, as well as their Douro wine brands –Quinta do Vesuvio, Quinta do Ataíde, Altano and Prats &  Symington (of Chryseia fame). In 2017 they launched a new venture, Quinta da Fonte Souto, in the Alto Alentejo. 

Symington Family Estates is a leading premium port producer and the leading owner of prime vineyard in the Douro Valley, with 26 Quintas covering 2,233 hectares, with 1,076 hectares of vineyard. The family business is a founding member  of Primum Familiae Vini – an association of 12 European wine families – and in 2020 was voted in 7th place in The World’s Most Admired Wine Brands list by a panel of over 200 international wine experts organized by Drinks  International. 

All Symington vineyards are sustainably managed under a minimum intervention certification and 130 ha are organically  farmed – the largest area of organic vineyard in northern Portugal. The family has invested significantly in viticulture  R&D to adapt to climate change and have an ambitious sustainability plan, with a series of public goals under the banner  of Mission 2025. In 2019 the company became a Certified B Corporation – the first wine company in Portugal to take  this step – joining a global community of businesses audited for the highest standards of social and environmental  responsibility. Symington was named Ethical Company of the Year in The Drinks Business 2019 Green Awards.