Chocolate, walnut and ripe berry aromas, with some figs and plums showing the heat of the vintage. Full-bodied and very sweet with dried fruits and a softness and lusciousness. Shows the unique character of base of the blend, Quinta do Roeda.
The 2017 Vintage Port is a field blend aged for approximately 20 months in French oak. It comes in with 97 grams of residual sugar. This was only seen before bottling previously. Now, with some bottle aging, it looks super, superior to the 2016, also reviewed, and a fine 2017. It is, of course, extremely young. It’s tight but not astringent (at least with decanting); the fruit is as if just crushed, and it is beautifully balanced. This is not even close to showing all it has. Throw it in the cellar. You can drink it now, but you’ll just be wasting it. Right now, this and the 2016 are close, but I predict this will pull ahead with every passing year.
The 2016 Vintage Port is a field blend with 104 grams of residual sugar. When last seen this was in good form. Let’s check in. Darker in its flavor profile than the 2017, this is more rhubarb, plums and blackberries. The tannins have moderated a bit, but obviously this is not exactly tamed. It is coming along fast enough so you can dive in now (or soon) with some decanting, but it certainly will show better at the end of the decade (or later).
The 2018 Vintage Port is a field blend aged for approximately 18 months in very old and large wooden vats. It comes in with 100 grams of residual sugar. This is the third straight declaration (2016, 2017 and this 2018) of a classic Vintage Port for Taylor’s. When last seen, this was very good. Let’s check in. This is an accessible Taylor’s that drinks fairly well now, but it still shows some power. Most of all, though, the fruit is sensational. It’s utterly delicious, with the young fruit ripe and rolling over the palate. This is coming along fast, so that with decanting, you might even drink it now, but that would be an error. It is not coming close to showing everything it has. In the back of my head, I am wondering a little about how fast this is coming around, so it seems, but it does so many things well, I can’t be churlish right now. Let’s see in time if it is going to be a long-haul wine, as I expect Taylor’s to be.
Deeply colored, this Vintage Port is beautifully rich and balanced. The bouquet gains in intensity with aeration, showing black fruit laced with lavender and orange citrus. The palate is refined and compelling with a sweet, fleshy entry, a lush, mouth filling texture, and a complex, persistent finish. It offers delicious drinking that will only get better with time.