Red - Fortified

1994 Dow Porto Vintage

Port Blend

  • Portugal
  • Douro
  • Porto

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Community Tasting Note

  • Xavier Auerbach wrote: 93 points

    April 4, 2021 - Pristine bottle, purchased at auction in 2003. Last tasted in November 2019, when I opined that it should be followed closely, because the tannic structure was melting away fast. Some 18 months later, there is no abrupt development to report, but this bottle does remind us that 1994 Vintage Port was by and large produced with an emerging US market and its preferences in mind. A quarter of a century later, there are clearly recognisable upsides to that approach. The cherry fruit is succulent and pure, there is lovely balancing acidity, and the wine feels youthfully fresh with lots of spicy, minerally energy. It's completely ready, with only a hint of nuttiness, and just a tad simple. Very nice, but for a traditionalist like me, this is not when the case should be finished, this is when the game begins! Over the next 20-30 years, the tertiary development will take place which will elevate a fine Vintage Port to true greatness. To that heavenly state where the great wines from 1963, 1966 and 1970 are today. Will this wine get there? I am not sure, for a very simple reason. The fruit needs protection from oxidation to go through this very gradual process, and we are faced with a fundamental lack of tannins here. Acidity and alcohol are helpful to protect the wine (the wine is sweet for Dow but not very sweet), but essentially we need firm tannins to oxidise before the fruit does. And they're just not there. I will be old and grey in 30 years' time, but I fear that this may wither before I do. I do hope that I will be around to prove myself wrong though. "Gather ye rosebuds while ye may, Old time is still a-flying, And this same flower that smiles today, Tomorrow will be dying." (Robert Herrick, 1591-1674).

    18 people found this helpful 5,393 views


  • fingers commented:

    4/4/21, 12:16 PM - Wonderfully thorough note. Thank you

  • Alc13%byvol commented:

    6/17/21, 12:31 PM - ditto

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