Portwineday used to be all about traveling in the Douro, meeting people, dancing, drinking, and having fun. This year Portwineday 2021 was more about receiving lovely samples at home, pouring them, and having a nice tasting with Paulo Russell-Pinto from IVDP, the Portwine Institute. It was a pleasure, even sitting in my own chair, sharing a glass of Port, thinking about good times. Dinner by the river is memories and hopes for the time to come. We will all be back in the Douro and Porto, before we know it. My first plan is this spring, to go and visit friends and partners in the cellars, in the vineyards of the Douro and sitting at the table enjoying bacalhau. Taking a cab to Matosinhos, eating fresh fish at the restaurants here, laughing and having a good time with friends around the table.
You see, I am an old man and the memories are still there. Fortunately enough I am also young enough to build many more memories in time to come. See you in Porto, Vila Nova di Gaia and along the Douro at the quintas.
These were the wines chosen by IVDP for us to taste. They were all good representatives of the style they were supposed to explain. Wines were presented by each house and commented by Paulo as well. Very nice tasting for Portwineday 2021
Quinta do Noval, Fine White Port
Bright clear with a lemon tone. Quite balanced on the nose with notes of hay and roasted almonds. Some lemon peel all based on a medium intensity. Sweet on the attack with clear butterscotch and sweet lemon candy. Fine flowers and a very mature apple. Build on sweetness, with a fresh high acidity. Easy drinking and clean in the finish.
Churchill’s 10 years Old Tawny
A bit red on the edge but fine oxidation on the nose with leather and dried fruit. Palate is so well balanced with roasted walnuts, dried apricot and long good intensity. This is a wine that is a pleasure to drink and shows the first signs of maturation in an oxidative environment. It becomes a bit unfocused and lacking depth at the end. Not my favorite 10 years, but I think this is a difficult category.
Dalva’s 20 years Old Dry White
Deep golden in the glass with stars sparkling on the edge. Some reduction on the nose with cabbage and some medicine. The aromas is like wet stone and fine pineapple, with some fine blossom notes. The palate is highly intense with a good grip from the wood. Flavors goes in direction of dried fruit, apple, lemon and at the end some pineapple again. A lovely balance where the wine ends dry, with some bitterness, and a long finish. Delicious and would be amazing with a cake with dry nuts or almonds.
Quinta Santa Eufemia 30 years Old Tawny Port
A bit hazy and clear brown in the glass. Very open on the nose with clear caramel and sweet tobacco. The plate of tertiary aromas just keeps developing with everything from meat to chocolate. Very precise and clean, which continues on the palate. Such a lovey wine. Deep with plenty of layers. This wine is dominated by the tertiary aromas, but the fresh fruit of blackberry and cherry is still there. The end is more like figs and dried fruit. The wine keeps evolving and the finish is very long and intense. A fantastic expression of the wood matured ports.
Pacheca, LBV 2014 Port
Very deep in color and clear in the nose. This is all about black fruit and dark chocolate. So much going on in the glass, with fresh mint and crushed stone along the fruit. Lovely mouthfeel with creamy texture where tannins is wrapped lovely in the mature fruit. Black fruit and stone is dominating, but the wine has a nice freshness from the acidity to keep it going for a long time. Good complexity that draws you back to the glass. Serve this is large glasses chilled and get the impression of a really great wine. Strong wine in this category.
Portal Vintage Port 1995
Nice clear in the glass with an open aroma-profile of sweet figs and conserved red cherry. The palate is open and ready to drink. A good style based on fresh red fruit, combined with some stones crushed and some dry rose leaves. At the end the wine dances with a fine lively acidity and clean fruit. The tannins are surprisingly evolved and well-integrated in the wine. A very fresh and elegant style of Vintage Port which is not with broad shoulders but based more on elegance. Nice style and clean.
Thank you IVDP for Portwineday 2021
Thank you for inviting me to the table Paulo. Next time will be in Porto.