Port Vintage Wines
Vintage ports, the best quality of port wines
VINTAGE ports belong to the very closed circle of the greatest wines in the world. They are compared in France to the classified grands crus of Bordeaux wines or to the grands crus of Burgundy; in Italy with the best Barolo wines and in Spain with the great wines of Rioja ... Like many great wines, they are bottled fairly early, without treatment or filtration, after aging for only two years and they continue to evolve in a bottle. The selection of Vintage Ports only accepts the best plots in the best years. The VINTAGE port is really the best for a port.
At the tasting, the vintage ports, because of their personality at the same time soft and powerful, are distinguished from all the other great wines. They compete with a great Bordeaux wine on a prime rib or with a great Burgundy wine on a cream chicken. They are not only dessert wines even if no other wine can better accompany chocolate! Given their quality, and the drastic selection they have undergone, VINTAGE ports are expensive and highly sought after because they can be enjoyed both young and stored for a long time, for several decades. The vintage port offering that PORTOVINTAGE.COM offers you cannot be found elsewhere.
The origin of the VINTAGE qualifier:
There are several interpretations as to the origin of the VINTAGE qualifier to designate the best Port wines. The first and most logical is that this name was given by the English, in reference to the year of production of the port considered. Vintage means vintage in English. Vintage Ports are therefore wines from a single harvest, produced in a single year.
Another historical reason which led to the birth of this qualification for a Port wine:
In times of crisis producers used to sell their small wines more easily and kept the best, more structured, more powerful, to sell later when prices went up. Their best wines were then sold as Vintage Ports of a specific year. This last explanation is consistent with the current obligation to keep these wines two years after the harvest to declare them VINTAGE.All the producers keep the best part of their harvest to be able to declare a Vintage year.This qualification can be obtained every year but not in all properties, or even for all the plots of a property. The wines of Porto Vintage are the honor and glory of their producers and reward all their efforts, from the vine to the bottling.
The selection and the approval to become a Port Vintage
When a producer wants to declare one of his Port wines vintage, the approval process takes place as follows: The producer must first send a sample of this Port wine to the Port Wine Institute between January 1 and September 30 of the second year following the harvest. This sample must then be approved by the Chamber of tasters of the Port Wine Institute. The producer must also register with the Port Wine Institute the stock of wine he wishes to declare VINTAGE. Once approved, it is this precise volume that it will be authorized to bottle.
Port Vintage regulations
As soon as he obtains the approval of the Port Wine Institute, the producer can bottle the VINTAGE port immediately and until June 30 of the third year following the harvest. Each bottle will be authenticated by a specific stamp, sold by the Port Wine Institute and certifying either the category of the wine or the origin of this wine. Producers can only sell their VINTAGES Ports from July 1 of the second year following the harvest. Note that most producers age their VINTAGE ports in bottles longer, so as not to put them too young on the market. The aging in bottles of VINTAGE ports allows the tannins to round up, the fruit aromas to stew, the empyreumatic notes to appear (toasted / toasted, tobacco, coffee, caramel, chocolate, pepper) and good sugar. blend in with alcohol. They then delight consumers...
Port VINTAGE life and tasting
Once its evolution in bottle, a Port Vintage wine is calibrated to live very old (easily over 20 years) and remain delicious all its life. His youth is full of strength, fruit and structure, which does not please all tasters, some preferring to wait patiently for adolescence. However, there are more and more connoisseurs who love to taste Vintage Ports in their youth, to accompany a meal until dessert, especially if it is a chocolate dessert. During his adolescence a vintage Port wine goes through different phases, with an evolution that is continuous but not uniform. The tannins begin to round, the aromas of fruit ripen and refine… Gastronomic marriages remain the same as in his youth. When an adult, a vintage Porto wine is characterized by its richness on the nose and mouth as well as by its power. Round, structured, elegant, a Vintage Porto will make you happy by accompanying your desserts or tasted after coffee. Anyway, one thing is certain: it is essential to have Porto Vintage in your cellar and to taste it regularly. If you don't, you may regret it because tasting a good Porto Vintage is one of the great pleasures of life.
The service tradition of Port VINTAGE
When you open a bottle of Vintage Porto wine you have to finish it the same day, which is not too difficult with a table of five or six people. What is difficult is not to open a second bottle… There is a tradition for serving Vintage Red Ports: the host carefully opens the bottle, helps himself, tastes the wine and if the quality suits him serves the guest placed to his right. Then the host fills the bottle and transmits it to the guest on his left, who repeats the operation until the bottle has passed through the hands of all the guests, circulating on the left and then returned to the master. Of house. It is only then, after a toast or not, that the tasting begins. There is an advantage in serving a slightly fresh vintage Porto wine, around 14 or 15 degrees, because it allows you to follow its evolution in the glass as the temperature rises and its aromas develop and captivate you…