Established in 2010, Go Brazil specialises in importing and distributing wines of Brazilian origin to the UK market and now, in 2021, we are proud still to be the only UK company to do so. Our portfolio showcases the best of modern Brazilian wine-making and incorporates a wide range of wine styles, producers and regions. As an independent company, purchasing decisions are ours alone and we do not seek to influence the type of wines produced by our suppliers. Our aim is to source high quality, interesting and well differentiated wines which will both stand out and offer good value in our competitive local market.
Based in Ipswich, Suffolk, the wines and spirits (cachaça) we purchase from Brazil are held at a bonded warehouse near London, from where we deliver to customers in the South East, East Anglia, the rest of the UK and beyond.
Firstly, we know and love the country, not least for the genuine warmth and enthusiasm of its people. Second, we have a passion for wine and want to bring the best that Brazil can offer to UK shores. And thirdly, we think it makes sense to focus on one single (rather large) country.
Our Brazilian wine-related activities include:
– Hosting wine tastings for clubs, societies, companies, universities, private parties and other groups (in person & online)
– Supplying weddings, themed parties and corporate events
– Supplying the UK and European wine trade
– Supplying direct to UK consumers online and at tastings, fairs and festivals >Shop here
– Organising tours of the key Brazilian wineries and wine-producing regions
We also work in a non-wine related area:
– Providing sales, marketing and consultancy services to UK and European companies who wish to do business in Brazil and vice-versa
So does Brazil really produce wine? And is it any good?!
The answer to this first question is, quite simply, yes. Although it was the Portuguese who first introduced vines to Brazil in the 16th century, Brazil’s commercial wine-making heritage can be traced back nearly 150 years, to the last quarter of the 19th century, when the first of many Italian emigrants arrived in the south of the country and started putting their existing wine-making skills to good use.
The modern Brazilian wine industry still retains an Italian feel, not least because many of the descendants of those original settlers are involved in wine-making, and sometimes within wineries which still bear their family name. Since the turn of the 21st century, however, many new vineyards wineries have appeared, owned by wealthy entrepreneurs or families with very different backgrounds and with limited prior experience of the industry.
Now, in 2021, Brazil is enjoying a growing reputation for fine wines and these are consistently winning international awards. Arguably it was the 2014 FIFA World Cup and then the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio which really helped put Brazilian wines on the map, with the result that supermarkets and independent merchants worldwide started to stock them for the first time. More recently, reviews in respected trade magazines such as ‘Decanter’ and ‘Harpers’ have been extremely positive, while leading critics such as Jancis Robinson MW OBE, Oz Clarke OBE and Steven Spurrier are known to be fans.
From our own experience exhibiting at wine shows and festivals, Go Brazil has noticed a steady increase in consumers’ awareness and acceptance of Brazilian wine – together with a corresponding growth in sales – and we anticipate these will grow further. Indeed, Covid-induced lockdown (at least in the UK) seems to have allowed people to explore online, encouraging many to experiment with ‘new’ wines for the first time..
Brazil’s a tropical country – surely it isn’t possible to grow grapes there?
Actually, yes it is! Around 90% of Brazil’s vineyards are situated in the far south of the country. This is a vast region, bordering both Argentina and Uruguay, and comprising the states of Rio Grande do Sul and Santa Catarina. Although technically sub-tropical, it is relatively cool compared with the rest of the country, with fog, frosts and rain all commonplace. Altitude plays an important role too, varying from around 600m in the Serra Gaúcha hills down to 150m in the most southerly Campanha region. This contrasts markedly with the more northerly uplands of Santa Catarina, Brazil’s coldest state, where the highest peak reaches 1827m (>6000’) and snow is not unusual!
These temperate conditions favour the production of sparkling wine – for which Brazil now has an international reputation – but both red and white grapes intended for the production of still wines benefit from a long growing season and generally hot summers.
There are however a couple of exceptions to the above:
New wineries have started to emerge in the state of São Paulo, whose capital city (also São Paulo) lies on the Tropic of Capricorn at 23.4° latitude. This region it is too hot and too wet to harvest grapes during the normal January-March season experienced further south so, ingeniously, the harvest is delayed until the winter months of July-August, when the weather is much cooler and drier. A newly developed technique allows for an extra pruning of the vines, which delays the onset of the fruit. The São Paulo-based Guaspari winery, which first planted vines only 20 years ago, is one of our new suppliers and is creating some much acclaimed wines using these methods.
Second, mention must be made of the vineyards of northeast Brazil, situated alongside the banks of the River São Francisco on the border of the states of Pernambuco and Bahia. Here, due to the region’s proximity to the Equator (at 8-9°), there are no seasons and thanks to constant irrigation the vines produce at least two harvests per year! Read more here.
Go Brazil Wines and Spirits – View our current range of wines from Brazil here.