José de Sousa is a blend of Trincadeira, Aragonês and Grand Noir grapes. Partially fermented in clay pots and stainless steel tanks, it is aged for eight months in new (30% of total production) American and French oak, and a further nine months in the bottle. The purchase of Casa Agricola José de Sousa Rosado Fernandes in 1986 saw a long-held dream become reality for José Maria da Fonseca: to produce Alentejo wine using traditional winemaking methods from an estate with history and prestige. This property won on both counts, having produced wine since at least 1878 and having one absolutely legendary vintage - the José de Sousa 1940. The Monte do Ribeira estate that contains the vineyard lies alongside the road into Monsaraz and has an area of 120 hectares, of which 72 are planted with vines. The vines have always been grown in granite-based soil with excellent exposure to the sun; some were even planted by the hand of José de Sousa himself, particularly in the early 1950s when he concentrated on red grape varieties Trincadeira, Aragonês and Grand Noir. We started replanting the vineyard in 1988 and completed the task at the end of the 1990s.