Dow’s Vintage Ports are only produced in years of exceptional quality and represent only a very small part of the total company’s production in that year. On average only two or three times every ten years are the weather conditions sufficiently good to allow for the making of Dow’s Vintage Port.
Dow's Vintage Ports are drawn from the companies' finest vineyards; Quinta do Bomfim and Quinta de Senhora da Ribeira. Each property contributes to the Dow’s unique and distinctive style. When young, Dow’s Vintage Ports are purple-black, austere, complex and intensely concentrated, full-bodied and balanced with very fine peppery tannins.
Over the centuries, the Dow winemakers have evolved a style that suits the house’s key vineyards; fermentations are a little longer, resulting in a drier Port Wine that has become the hallmark of Dow’s. Abundant fruit flavours with hints of ripe blackberries, give elegance and poise to Dow’s. The nose is deep and powerful with strong overtones of violets when young, these mature into fine cinnamon and rose-tea aromas with age. The very high percentage of Touriga Franca and Touriga Nacional planted on the vineyards result in the powerful structure and aging potential of Dow’s Vintage Ports.
Impenetrable blue-black colour with narrow purple rim. Intricate and finely constituted, the nose displays classic Taylor elegance and poise. A dense core of pure complex fruit, redolent of blackberry and cassis, is enveloped in a fragrant aura of violets. Resiny garrigue scents and subtle notes of of liquorice and black coffee emerge as the nose develops. On the palate, taut, linear tannins provide a solid framework. Fine berry fruit flavours linger into the finish where the tannins re-emerge to provide an attractive touch of austerity. This is textbook Taylor’s, the fine aromas and distinctive floral character of Vargellas blending with the dense dark woodland fruit and herbal scents of Terra Feita to produce a stylish wine with the unmistakeable Taylor combination of stamina and refinement.
Cockburn's 2011 Vintage Port shows a distinctive fragrant esteva (rockrose) nose, indicative of the substantial Touriga Nacional contribution to the final blend. In the mouth there is a wonderful, pure fruit quality (red cherries and strawberry) denoting the fresh acidity, which underpins the wine's structure and balance. A wine of great finesse and poise, in the style of the early 20th century Cockburn's Vintage Ports.