The Port Forum Offline #1

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AHB
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The Port Forum Offline #1

Post by AHB » 11:07 Fri 20 Jul 2007

It was a real pleasure to meet up with a bunch of other port fans on Wednesday night and my thanks go to Alex K for making all the arrangements and to the staff - and Ian in particular - at the Crusting Pipe for making us as welcome as always. Julian's tasting notes and mats also went down a treat and were greatly appreciated.

Attending were myself, Alex K., Derek T., Uncle Tom, Christopher Gee and his guest John, a surprise appearance from Alan C. and our excuse for the evening - Ronnie and Lady Roots.

We poured 10 ports and 4 table wines. Sadly, I didn't take notes of the table wines but the ports that were poured and my impressions of them are set out below. All except the Niepoort 1977 were poured blind and in semi-random order and we had some fun trying to guess what they were :oops:

Croft b. 1960
Tom thought that this was the 1950 Croft rather than the 1960, but I have listed this in my tasting notes database as a 1960 based on what I thought I managed to read on the elderly cork. Pale rose in colour with a weak and watery looking rim, milk chocolate and oranges on the nose. Initial impact slightly bitter; tobacco, raisins and aniseed comes through in a nicely delivering mid palate. A slight burn on swallowing is followed by a lovely aftertaste. This wine is old and frail, but not falling apart by any means and was very enjoyable. About what I would expect of a mature vintage port. 5/5 or 92/100 and my joint favourite wine of the night. Tom picked this as a Croft, I picked it as a 1958.

Croft 1975
One of the surprises of the night, this port has the suffing to keep improving for a few years yet. Mid rose, watery rim. Alcoholic nose with ripe redcurrants and tobacco. Sweet into the mouth and showing some age-developed flavours. Some complexity in the mid-palate and a good aftertaste that lasts well. Not an overly impressive wine but I would expect this to improve a little over the next 10 years. 4/5 or 88/100.

Cruz Ruby
Alex K brought this for the Roots' to try (and, I suspect, so that he could get rid of the bottle and use the space for something else). Funky nose and taste, it wasn't revolting and received the praise of "Better than the Cockburn Ruby". 2/2 or 82/100.

Cruz 1989
This was one of my contributions and generated a lot of amusement when I revealed what it was. A couple of people who shall remain unnamed had this down as Fonseca (even if from a lesser year, like 1975), but there was some very serious and intent discussion about whether this was an English style or a Portuguese style of winemaking and whether it came from a “big name† or one of the obscure houses. My tasting note reads “Mid red centre, paling rim but with the colour holding into the rim. Sweet cherries on the nose, some bitter apples and aniseed. Sweet fruit impact, Liquorice All Sorts and plenty of development in the flavours. Some tannins show through and there is an elegant if slightly short length. About average for drinking today, but not likely to be as good in a decade's time. 5/4 or 88/100.†

Dow 1980
Deep, young colour holding right into the rim. Closed nose, overly alcoholic (but the wines were very warm) but some sweet toffees and strawberries. Strawberries again in the initial flavours but a shade hollow in the mid-palate; tannins still clearly present gave a very enjoyable aftertaste that lasted a good time. Will be better in a decade and I might see if I can track some down at a reasonable price. 4/5 or 90/100.

Fonseca 1955
I had this down as a Noval, it was so light and elegant and very impressive. Very pale rose, with a browning rim. Brown sugar, treacle and a promising bite of pepperiness on the nose. Dry entry and a mouthfeel that stays dry for a surprising time before the sweetness of the delicate fruit comes back into the flavour mix. Lots of brown sugars on the aftertaste. Quite a lovely wine, elderly and elegant. My third favourite wine of the night and a cork to reconstruct!. 6/5 or 91/100.

Fonseca 1966
Mid red with a rose coloured rim. Very odd nose, presented blind I seriously doubted this was a port. Nose full of volatile acidity and fairy liquid. However, this was very port-like in the mouth and convinced me that it was a port. Sweet on entry, with some fruit initially that develops into raspberry jam in the mid palate, nice acidic structure but a very odd bottle. This bottle is not representative of this wine (Lea & Sandeman, London). NR. Hopefully Ronnie was able to get a replacement from Lea & Sandeman.

Fonseca 1977
Deep red, solid but transparent core and a colour that holds right into the rim. Grassy smell at first from the glass but then comes a wonderful mix of red liquorice and violets. Initial mouthfeel is a little hollow but sweet red liquorice comes through in the mid-palate together with a nice spicy, peppery, bite. Aftertaste was either a little short or my palate was getting tired. Slightly disappointing today, but clearly has the ingredients to develop some more. 4/6 or 86/100.

Niepoort 1977
The only vintage port not presented blind, this was in honour of Lady Roots as a birth year port. Pale rose, brown rim, looking more elderly than I would have expected for a 1977. Sweet nose, a mix of ripe blackcurrants and orange peel. Sweet entry but very tawny flavours, delicate sugars, raisins and rose petals. Modest aftertaste dominated by burnt sugar. Rated by me as slightly below the average (for my taste in ports) of the ports I would expect to drink this year and also one that I don't think will improve with more bottle age. 4/4 or 88/100.

Offley Boa Vista 1963
Oh dear. The worst example of corked wine that I have come across in many years. Undrinkable and even unsniffable. NR.

Quarles Harris 1977
The last of three bottles of this port that I bought from a Belgian supermarket around 1993. Deep rose colour that holds right into the rim, smelling of freshly made (but uncooked) Christmas cake mix. Smooth and sweet into the mouth with some surprising thickness. Little fruit initially, but zesty, dried fruit does come through on the mid-palate. Tannins are well integrated but do support a good, if slightly short, aftertaste. Above average for the wines I expect to drink this year, but not likely to improve or deteriorate significantly in 10 years so a TomScore of 6/6 and a Parker score of 92/100. This was my other top port of the evening.

Alex
Last edited by AHB on 17:19 Fri 20 Jul 2007, edited 2 times in total.
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Photos; F66

Post by jdaw1 » 12:51 Fri 20 Jul 2007

1. Consider yourself officially chastised for the absence of photos.

2. Interesting comparison between your Fonseca 1966 and that tasted the previous weekend.

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Post by uncle tom » 13:42 Fri 20 Jul 2007

Croft 1950 or 58

The old Croft had very faint branding on the cork, but one of the few details I was confident of was that the third digit was a 5 and not a 6 - so I remain convinced this was the '50 or '58, as I would not expect the '55 to be so pale.

Pleasant but fading, with classic Croft signature.

Croft '75

I should have clocked this one as I've had it twice this year already - one of the immaculate bottles from the cellar of the late Lord Lichfield.

Cruz...

This may be the brand that everyone loves to hate, but it really did acquit itself very well. The Ruby was entirely competant for it's class, and the '89 VP came over as a mainstream wine from a mainstream vintage, and was both youthful and approachable.

Dow '80

Wow! A very full dark wine. Still very youthful. Unlike most 80's this has loads of years left - a class act.

Fonseca '55

The cork of my unknown '55 revealed it to be Fonseca, but no-one guessed this - most pitching for Dow. Not as spicy or quite as good as the bottle I opened at the offline last xmas, but still in the top drawer, with loads of life left.

Fonseca '66

Oh dear. Something very wrong here - it did not taste right at all. Very tentatively, I am wondering if this is a case of 'upright bottle syndrome' - an old bottle that spent most of it's life stood upright in a kitchen cupboard somewhere - there is some similarity between this and a Taylor '70 I once had which was known to have been stored that way.

Morgan '91

I clocked this as a '91, but didn't realise it was of the M's straight off.

I have a good feeling about this vintage - still in the 'Kevin' phase now, I think they will really blossom in a few years time, and may outlive the '94's

Julian asks for photos - but did anyone take any??

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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Post by AHB » 13:57 Fri 20 Jul 2007

No-one did take photos, but we have all been suitably chastised. Perhaps on the next occasion.

Tom - how about some scores. I'd be interested to see where you pitch your thoughts on the performance of the wines. All except the Offley '63 (late edit to add this to my notes above) and the Fonseca '66 were enjoyable, but none really hit the spot and sat out as top quartile for me but I am wondering if my palate was on form on Wednesday night as some of the wines there I would have expected to have been some of the 25 best wines I taste this year.

Alex
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Post by uncle tom » 16:55 Fri 20 Jul 2007

Scoring a succession of wines in fast order needs discipline and a spitoon - this was too much of a boozy night out (for me, anyway.. :D )

One or two wines had not been decanted long enough - the Niepoort '77 in particular. Of the others, the most remarkable were the Cruz '89, which I would rank a 6-6, and the Dow '80 - my favourite of the night - ranking at least 8-8, possibly worthy of a 9.

The Fonseca '55 I gave a 7-6, and the old Croft, though very pleasantly flavoursome, was suffering the ravages of age too much to get a high score - at best 5-4

Tom
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Post by KillerB » 17:56 Fri 20 Jul 2007

Next time I have a spare bottle of Niepoort 77 I'm going to decant it the night before. It was decanted at 9:30 and put back in the bottle at 1:30 before drinking at 8ish. General consensus was it needed a lot more.

Biggest shames were the Offley being as badly corked as a badly corky thing can be and the surprisingly wrong Fonseca. Having had the Fonseca 66 before I can say that it should be an absolute dream wine but this one lacked anything.

I thought the Dow's 80 was excellent as well, well done to the Crusting Pipe for stocking it and Christopher for getting it.

Great to see everyone and putting a face to Uncle Tom.

Always great to see the Rootses and thanks for the bigga bigga chunka cheese.
Port is basically a red drink

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Naughty people!

Post by jdaw1 » 18:01 Fri 20 Jul 2007

KillerB wrote:and putting a face to Uncle Tom
which I’ll be able to do when the photos are posted.

Oh, I forgot. Naughty people!

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Post by StevieCage » 19:08 Fri 20 Jul 2007

Nice line-up; pity about those off bottles. However, I'm sure that they did not distract you all from having a great time!

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Post by Conky » 21:53 Fri 20 Jul 2007

I made a very late decision to attend. I'm glad I did.
The Root's brought a riesling table wine. Now I had subconsciously avoided Reisling, which probably harked back to the Anti-Freeze controversies. I'd been missing, out, what a lovely drink.

AHB had me completely with the Cruz VP. It was pleasant. And to here the guy to my right(You know who you are) as well as most of the table compliment it, was worth the journey.

I now realise I'm one of those fortunate souls who cant smell Corked bottles. Whilst I was thinking the Offleys Boa Vista was a bit watery, and plain, a collective groan went up from the table. It only dawned on me later, that I let them throw it all away! If I couldn't smell the Corkedness, why didn't I keep hold of it? You live and learn.

Now at this point I should admit that I had aCamera. Yet never ctook it out of my bag. I also had Tasting Note sheets, and never wrote a word. Yes I am a fully paid up, card carrying idiot!

I felt very sorry for Ronnie, who had bought a bottle that should have been a star. The Fonseca 66. I remember thinking that it may be a trick bottle because I couldn't easily recognise it was Port. When it was uncovered, I was amazed and felt that something had gone seriously wrong!

I'm with AHB on Toms Cork. It was a 6 not a 5. Very nice though.

I've done some detective work, and found out that 4 of us had another tasting that evening. When most had left, and Chris, John, Derek and I were left stood outside the Crusting Pipe, Chris went in to get around of drinks. It transpired that a member of staff had found a bottle that was still full near our table. Chris, thinking it was just a bonus, had it opened and four of us had a glass. It tasted lovely.
Only today, when I asked Tom if he still had my Fonseca 63 that he had brought for my Tasting in September did the penny drop. Tom had left it on a nearby table for me. I had not noticed and was oblivious. So here we were, having an expensive nightcap, and I dont even know what happened to the rest of the bottle! Agony.

Having said that, Chris and John treated Derek and I royally and off we went into the night for more fun. I didn't know London now had Rickshaws. Some poor soul had to peddle with me(20stone) and John for a few blocks. How he kept the front wheel down defied science.

The end of the night was when we got back to Dereks Hotel. He had graciously let me bunk in for the night, and with rather large bellys full of food and drink of all discriptions, we decided it was essential to order food on the Room Service! I awoke in the morning to see two empty plates, with no memory of what had been on them. It transpired I had fallen asleep and the ever resourceful Derek had scoffed them both! Greedy Sod!

It was great to put faces to names, and another funny night locked away in the memory bank.

Alan

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Post by StevieCage » 23:27 Fri 20 Jul 2007

Now THAT'S an offline - well done Alan! 88)

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Post by AHB » 16:54 Sat 21 Jul 2007

Well at least Alan can add another 1963 vintage port to the list of birth year ports consumed.

Pity you didn't manage to drink the whole bottle between you all ... or did you?

Alex
Top Port in 2017 (so far): Graham Stone Terraces 2015 and Quinta do Vesuvio 1994
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Post by Conky » 17:12 Sat 21 Jul 2007

I remember having a decent glass of port, as did the other 3. It wasn't anywhere near a full bottle and I was under the misunderstanding it was probably the leftovers from our Tastings. It was Chris who went and got the glasses, and if sober enough, he probably has the answer.
A minor frustration on an amusing night. If there's a next time, I'll hand over the money with my left hand and take the bottle with my right! An then the jobs a good un. :lol:

Alan

I've just re-read this, and I must point out that Tom said he told me where he'd put it, and I have no reason to doubt that. I probably made that fatal mistake of smiling and nodding when I hadn't actually heard the remark. These things happen.

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Post by uncle tom » 19:48 Sat 21 Jul 2007

smiling and nodding
You were! - glad you worked out what happened to it - did no-one think to look at the capsule before it was opened? I have plenty more if you want another for September..

I wish I'd joined you for the crawl afterwards - I managed to miss the last train by seconds, and had to indulge a very expensive taxi ride home..

..should have gone back, and then crawled onto the milk train at 5am..

Derek - do you still have that cork? I'm sure that's a 5... :evil:

Tom
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Post by AHB » 19:54 Sat 21 Jul 2007

I wish I'd stayed on in London, as well. Although I did manage to catch my last train (just) I still only managed about 3½ hours sleep before having to get up to get my sorry self over to Heathrow just to sit and wait for 3 hours waiting for our designated take-off slot.

God I hate Heathrow. I wish someone would fly to Munich from one of the more convenient airports around me.

So I could have booked a room in London, on the company, and then taken the Heathrow Express to the airport. This would have netted me an extra 2½-3 hours of sleep or - more likely - 2½-3 hours of additional port appreciation time.

Perhaps on the occasion of the next London offline, when Andy V comes over...

Alex

(PS - apologies to Julian, but I can't be bothered to look up the numbers I'm supposed to type to get single glyphs for ellipsis and m-dashes)

(PPS - can we make Julian a moderator so that he can edit other people's postings where they want their grammar and/or punctuation fixed?)
Last edited by AHB on 07:07 Sun 22 Jul 2007, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by DRT » 21:29 Sat 21 Jul 2007

AHB wrote:Well at least Alan can add another 1963 vintage port to the list of birth year ports consumed.

Pity you didn't manage to drink the whole bottle between you all ... or did you?

Alex
I think the answer to that would be yes :wink:

Uncle Tom wrote:Derek - do you still have that cork? I'm sure that's a 5...
No. I had a bag with me which, I think contained a few small dregs from some of the ports and my corks. The bag did not make it back to the hotel :roll:

Derek
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Ernest H. Cockburn

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Post by Conky » 21:40 Sat 21 Jul 2007

Derek T. wrote:
AHB wrote:Well at least Alan can add another 1963 vintage port to the list of birth year ports consumed.

Pity you didn't manage to drink the whole bottle between you all ... or did you?

Alex
I think the answer to that would be yes :wink:

Uncle Tom wrote:Derek - do you still have that cork? I'm sure that's a 5...
No. I had a bag with me which, I think contained a few small dregs from some of the ports and my corks. The bag did not make it back to the hotel :roll:

Derek
For the Hercule Poirots, or Inspector Morses amongst you....

Read that Post and guess where the rest of that bottle went! All the clues are there. :wink:

Alan

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Re: The Port Forum Offline #1

Post by DRT » 21:49 Sat 21 Jul 2007

Here are my thoughts on the ports....

Croft 1950. 58 or 60
This was the last of 4 bottles I bought in 2003, all sold as Warre's 1966 and all outwardly identical, including the paint markings, cellar dust and foil capsule. The other 3 were fabulous wines, dark thick, fruity with branded corks confirming that they were what I had thought I had bought. When I opened this one 24 hours before the offline I knew immediately it was not the same wine. A different cork, much lighter colour and a very tawny nose. When the cork was still wet I couldn't see any branding. I was instantly disappointed with this wine and thought it was an off bottle of something, probably another 1966 due to the bottle and capsule being identical to the others.

Tom immediately identified the nose as Croft and then 3 or 4 people spent about 20 minutes examining the cork and arguing about what they could and could not see. Very amusing to watch. I thought the wine stood up well in the company and when Tom gave told me he was certain that it was a Croft 50 I felt very pleased about the £40 I had paid for it 4 years previously :D

Croft 1975
I bought this bottle from Tom a few weeks ago. I brought it along in honour of Ronnie's birth year and was extremely surprised at how immature it was in comparison to other 1975's I have tasted. This was a very nice wine. Good to drink now but will hold at least until Ronnie's 50th birthday :wink:

Cruz Ruby
Rubbish. You didn't get me with this one, KillerB :P

Cruz 1989
I was suckered like everyone else with this. I have had it before but with a much older looking label. I wonder if some have suffered from being shipped early and then sitting in supermarket warehouses and on shleves for a few years. This one looked like the more modern labels Cruz started using recently.

Dow 1980
WOW, a huge wine and very, very young. Can't say much more than that as I have no notes but this was one of the ports of the night for me.

Fonseca 1955
I think I got Fonseca but maybe I'm just dreaming that. I was lucky enough to share the other bottle of this that Tom opened at Christmas and remembered him telling me then that he didn't know what it was until he pulled the cork :wink:

Fonseca 1966
When I learned what this was it was the biggest disappointment of the night for me. This is probably my favourite port.

Fonseca 1977
This was my other top port of the night. Well done Christopher - and I guessed it right 88)

Niepoort 1977
Very hot at the beginning of the night but mellowed considerably as the night wore on - or was that me :roll:

Offley Boa Vista 1963
Oh dear. The worst example of corked wine that I have come across in many years. Undrinkable and even unsniffable. NR.

Quarles Harris 1977
I can barely remember this one but do recall thinking that this is an underrated wine. Alan and I shared a bottle a few weeks back which was also very nice.

So, an impressive line-up with a few stars, a few surprises and a couple of disappointments - and some great friends to share it with 88)

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

Ernest H. Cockburn

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Post by DRT » 21:52 Sat 21 Jul 2007

Conky wrote: For the Hercule Poirots, or Inspector Morses amongst you....

Read that Post and guess where the rest of that bottle went! All the clues are there. :wink:

Alan
No, I'm fairly sure we done it there and then - I can remember us all remarking on how good it was :wink:

Derek
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Ernest H. Cockburn

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I wasn’t there, but here’s my opinion anyway

Post by jdaw1 » 22:05 Sat 21 Jul 2007

I wasn’t there, but that won’t stop me giving my opinion of the evening.
  • A great showing of people;
  • many more than none of whom are much better than me at identifying ports blind (perhaps because my tastings are always sighted);
  • a considerable quantity of port was consumed;
  • resulting in some late-evening confusion (trains, bottles, usual stuff);
  • and a complete absence of photos of bottles, liquid, corks, or people.
Am I wrong?

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Re: I wasn’t there, but here’s my opinion anyway

Post by DRT » 22:25 Sat 21 Jul 2007

jdaw1 wrote:I wasn’t there, but that won’t stop me giving my opinion of the evening.
  • A great showing of people;
  • many more than none of whom are much better than me at identifying ports blind (perhaps because my tastings are always sighted);
  • a considerable quantity of port was consumed;
  • resulting in some late-evening confusion (trains, bottles, usual stuff);
  • and a complete absence of photos of bottles, liquid, corks, or people.
Am I wrong?
jdaw,

You are now elected as Official Scribe for Offline #2 - that is the most concise and accurate assessment of the evening out of all the posts in this thread :lol:

Derek
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That’s off-topic, so I have replied elsewhere

Post by jdaw1 » 22:40 Sat 21 Jul 2007

That’s off-topic, so I have replied here.

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Post by RonnieRoots » 12:55 Sun 22 Jul 2007

It was a great offline, and an impressive line-up of ports. The next day was rough for sure. I don't even want to know why I was phoning Derek at 8AM... LadyR tried to be a good girl and attend her course at 7.30, but she was back quite soon to grab some additional sleep.

First of all:
- Great to meet you all! I'm already looking forward to the next time.
- Derek: thanks very much for the Warre '95 LBV.
- KillerB: that's one killer Stilton! Thanks so much for that, we will enjoy it together with lots of people I'm sure. BTW, the security lady at Heathrow was mildly less pleased... it came up on x-ray and she had to examine it. I apologized and smiled, but she was still a bit grumpy about it.

Then, the notes. They're in the same order that we tasted the wines:

Dry Wines:

Willi Schaefer 2005 Riesling Spätlese Graacher Domprobst
Very mineral, fresh nose, with lots of lovely flowery notes. It tastes much fuller than you'd expect from the nose. Again flowery, full aromatic fruit (lychees), some asian spice on the finish. Good acidity and very lively. This would have probably shown even better if the wine was a bit colder but was nevertheless very good already.

J.L. Chave 1997 Hermitage
Very clear ruby, if somewhat palish colour. Now there's a stinky nose. Menure for sure. And some currants as well. Tastes pretty subtle, with bright red fruit, and an undertone of red cherries, long silky finish with moderate tannins. Nice enough, but seems rather light. Tasted again the next day and it has gained an incredible amount of weight. Much more full and dark. Now with dark cherries and chocolate, coffee. We should have given this some time in a decanter.

Ridge 2003 Geyserville
Nice contrast to the previous wine, as this is pitch black in colour. A nose of sweet dark fruit, chocolate and LadyR detected nutmeg (I only noticed it was slightly dusty, but got it the moment she said it). Very fruit forward wine, medium bodied with fresh cherries and black currant and blackberry. Very nice wine and amazingly easy drinking.

Quinta de Macedos 2000 Douro
Again very dark in colour. Very extracted nose, causing the fruit to smell almost chemical. Lots of wood on the nose as well. Oof. This is a very, very full wine. Dry, lots of wood on the palate as well and lots of extracted dark fruit. This probably needs lots of time to come together, but it also seems that a bit of moderation would have done it no harm either. Some subtlety would be nice. But since this was the first wine by this producer, it would be very interesting to taste the newer vintages.

The Ports:

Cruz 1989
Pretty dark and young colour with only a slight brown edge. Nose isn't giving much, except for some dryness. Taste is much better: sweet and rather full. Velvety mouthfeel with nice dark flavours. Accessible and rather easy drinking. This got us by surprise for sure. :)

Niepoort 1977
Light and brownish colour with a ruby core. Quite alcoholic, some sweet strawberries showing through the otherwise nutty, raisiny nose. Pretty full flavoured, although it's light on fruit. Some light cherries, again strawberries and also raspberries. Milk chocolate and some spicy (dried) red chillies on the finish. Also some raisins and other dried fruit. I guess some more time in the decanter would have smoothened this out a bit, and probably would bring the fruit out some more too.

Croft - believed 1950 (or '58 or '60)
I was pretty sure to identify a '5' on the cork, but clearly there's no consensus on that, and we will never know for sure. Doesn't matter, it was special anyway. This has moved completely into tawny, showing only nuts and raisins on the (fairly alcoholic) nose. Warm and sweet on the palate, with tobacco, leather and raisins and maybe a hint of fruit somewhere. Delicate finish.

Fonseca 1966
Some prunes and coffee on the nose, but hardly giving anything else. Hmm. This tases odd. There are definitely some nice flavours, like plum and dried cherries, but all is overshadowed by a nasty hoppy bitterness. A disappointment for sure. When I tasted this the next day, the off putting flavours had fully disappeared. The port had turned into a nice mature, but easy drinking and simple VP. Because of this (and because not everyone was sure that they poured the F66 back into the bottle (LadyR and KillerB did have a confused look on their faces when they looked at their glasses), so some cruz89 may actually have 'enriched' this port) i didn't feel confident in bringing the bottle back. We drank it over the next two days. The last bit from a paper cup on Heathrow... We did buy a very nice replacement bottle(of something else, will of course not tell what), that we will open next time we meet you guys

Dow's 1980
Very dark looking port, that's still closed on the nose, only giving some red pepper. Tastes incredibly young and tight. Very complex and layered, but closed still. Needs lots of time and will be very, very good in due time. Glad to have some in the cellar!

Cruz Ruby
You can fool us once, but not twice! Sweet, simple, light and cloying. This is not so good.

Offley Boa Vista 1963
Corked! A real pity, as I would have loved to taste this.

Croft 1975
I've tasted this port before but this was a far better bottle. A very fine, light to medium bodied port, with lovely flavours. Milk chocolate, deep cherry and other red fruit. Not overly complex but drinking very nice now, and will at least hold a couple more birthdays! Thanks Derek for bringing this!

Fonseca 1977
Dark ruby colour. Some strawberries and licorice on the nose but otherwise closed. Dark cherry taste and a hot peppery finish. Closed, young and a bit raw. We've maybe had some better bottles of this before, but never as much closed as this one. A baby that definitely needs more time.

Fonseca 1955
Brownish, developed colour with a very dark nose. Tar, roasted nuts. Dark flavours, again with tar, brown suar and elegant fruit coming in afterwards. Medium bodied and elegant, but with incredible length. What a nice port. The star of the evening for me. Thanks so much for bringing this Tom!

Quarles Harris 1977
Delicate, flowery, easy drinking port. Nice and lovely. Had this once before and it was just as lovely now as it was then.

Morgan 1991
Full and dark, but very sweet on the palate. Young. Nice flavours, but a bit on the sweet side.

Thanks for a wonderful evening all!

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