Taylor’s Vintage Port is one of the world’s great iconic wines. Made only in the very finest years – known as ‘declared’ vintages – Vintage Ports are blended from the best produce of the firm’s own estates of Quinta de Vargellas, Quinta de Terra Feita and more recently, Quinta do Junco. After each harvest, the tasting panel selects the finest Port wines from the three properties and these are then left to age for two winters in oak vats. In their second Spring, they are tasted again. If they are judged to be of exceptional quality, the Port wines of the three estates are blended together, Vargellas bringing structure, elegance and complexity to the wine and Terra Feita and Junco body, depth and powerful, concentrated fruit. At this stage it must be decided whether a Vintage Port is to be ‘declared’. For a declaration to be made, the Vintage Port blend must be of outstanding quality: austere in its youth, with tremendous depth of flavour and massive structure, capable of evolving over years, or decades into that quintessence of great Port, a mature Taylor’s Vintage. Historically Taylor’s has only declared about three Vintage years per decade. Taylor’s Vintage Ports are renowned for their massive structure and aromatic power, tempered by a characteristic understatement and restraint. The ultimate collector’s Port wines, Vintage Ports will age for decades in the cellar, slowly developing the elegance and harmony which are the hallmarks of a mature Taylor’s Vintage Port.
Inky purple black with narrow magenta rim. Classic Taylor nose, with exotic scents of violet and gumcistus set against an impenetrable background of intense dark berry fruit. The 2003 Vintage Port shows a stylish and racy palate, displaying a tight fabric of sinewy tannins and packed with concentrated grapey flavours which intensify through the seemingly endless finish. Like many other great Taylor vintage this wine is an archetype of restrained power, its elegance and breeding concealing massive inner strength and stamina.
Store and Serve Advices:
Should be opened two hours before serving and decanted. Serve between 17º and 18º C. Store the bottle on its side, in a cool, dry and dark place.
Vintage Ports are after meal drinks. Take them with cheese like Stilton or Gorgonzola. But you can also incorporate them into a meal, combining for instance a Steak au Poivre with a young Vintage.
Reviews and Awards:
. 98 points in Robert Parker;
. 97 points in Anthony Gismondi;
. 97 points in Wine Enthusiast Magazine;
. 96 points in Wine & Spirits Magazine;
. 95 points in CellarTracker;
. 94 points in Wine Spectator Magazine;
. 93 points in Stephen Tanzer;
. 18 points in Jancis Robinson.