1996 Quinta do Vesuvio

Tasting notes for individual Ports, with an index sorted by vintage and alphabetically.
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Tasting notes for individual Ports, with an index sorted by vintage and alphabetically.
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AHB
Quinta do Noval Nacional 1962
Posts: 11095
Joined: 13:41 Mon 25 Jun 2007
Location: Berkshire, UK

1996 Quinta do Vesuvio

Post by AHB » 16:05 Sun 14 Oct 2007

After a few indulgences in older and mature wines, I decided it was time to give my cellar a breather and to return to a wine that I want to follow as it develops with time. This is the first of a pair of bottles that I bought from Berrys' in December 2005 in one of their sales. This particular vintage of Vesuvio seems to be around in the UK in cosiderable quantity. The blurb on the back label says that 65 pipes were produced (which, I think, is equivalent to 43,680) and that the '96 was the first vintage trodden entirely by foot by a team of men employed to do nothing but tread the lagares.

On decanting at 3:30pm, I noticed the same fine - almost metallic - sediment swirling around in the dregs of the bottle as I commented on a year ago. However, this time there were also some more substantial leaf-like deposits in the bottom of the bottle. The colour is an opaque red, still with a hint of youthful purple in the rim. Even sipped straight from the decanter, this has an overwhelming nose of blackcurrants and spearmint. A sip is immensely acidic, almost painful in the mouth, with the acidity distracting from the mass of fruit that is also there. What tannins there are only make themselves known very late on in the flavours. A wonderful aftertaste that takes a long time to develop after having to wince as the acidity burns on its way down, but stays in the mouth for a very long time.

More notes in due course.
Top Port in 2017 (so far): Graham Stone Terraces 2015 and Quinta do Vesuvio 1994
2016 Port of the year: Cockburn 1908

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AHB
Quinta do Noval Nacional 1962
Posts: 11095
Joined: 13:41 Mon 25 Jun 2007
Location: Berkshire, UK

Post by AHB » 21:55 Sun 14 Oct 2007

6 hours on and a second tasting note. The colour hasn't changed much but the nose has softened and is now just pure blackcurrant cordial concentrate, fresh and invigorating. In the mouth the first impression is of fruit, the searing acidity has backed off a little. It's still there, but is no longer the painfully dominant feature and is now much more structural and balanced. Throughout the mid-palate there are layers and layers of blackcurrant and bramble flavours with the tannins that you need to longevity hiding behind all this fruit. The aftertaste still takes a long time to arrive and is not particularly impressive - certainly the weakest feature of the wine at the moment.

Another taste and another note in due course.
Top Port in 2017 (so far): Graham Stone Terraces 2015 and Quinta do Vesuvio 1994
2016 Port of the year: Cockburn 1908

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AHB
Quinta do Noval Nacional 1962
Posts: 11095
Joined: 13:41 Mon 25 Jun 2007
Location: Berkshire, UK

Post by AHB » 21:15 Tue 23 Oct 2007

This wine drank beautifully over the course of 3 days, softening and changing over that time but extremely enjoyable at all stages when I tasted it.

On the third day, the tannins became more apparent on the midpalate, but the port remained ripe, soft and dominated by fruit. This is an extremely enjoyable port today - surprisingly so to me - and one which will be much better in a decade and will likely last 1-2 decades after that.

For drinking today, this is pretty much spot on the average of what I expect from a vintage port, so I will put it on the median. However, I do believe that its potential for the future is such that it will be above the median although I remain to be convinced if it will reach the top quartile. For now I score this as 5/7 or 89/100.
Top Port in 2017 (so far): Graham Stone Terraces 2015 and Quinta do Vesuvio 1994
2016 Port of the year: Cockburn 1908

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uncle tom
Dow 1980
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Joined: 23:43 Wed 20 Jun 2007
Location: Near Saffron Walden, England

Post by uncle tom » 23:14 Tue 23 Oct 2007

I picked up loads of these at a silly price a couple of years back.

I will probably re-visit a bottle before the year is out - my last encounter was of a young but sound - and very forward - wine

Tom
I may be drunk, Miss, but in the morning I shall be sober and you will still be ugly - W.S. Churchill

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DRT
Graham’s 1948
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Joined: 23:51 Wed 20 Jun 2007
Location: Chesterfield, UK
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Post by DRT » 23:23 Tue 23 Oct 2007

uncle tom wrote:I picked up loads of these at a silly price a couple of years back.
Oh dear, I feel a trip to Cambridgeshire coming on :lol: :wink:

Derek
"The first duty of Port is to be red"

Ernest H. Cockburn

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