Taylor Fladgate Vintage Port 2017
Opaque black at the centre with a narrow purple rim. Uncompromisingly Taylor's in style, elegant and precise. The nose is threaded with very fine, linear fruit, heady and complex but restrained by a graphite minerality. Quinta da Vargellas has imprinted its signature fragrance of violets, which hangs like a scented veil over the wine, and there are discreet terroir notes of citrus, wild herbs and gumcistus. The nose is still reserved but there is impressive depth and background, as well as hints of complexities still to emerge with time. The palate is held in place by lithe, muscular tannins, firm and grippy on the finish, and ends with a powerful surge of crisp, pure berry fruit. A beautifully delineated wine, with the hallmark Taylor's poise and definition and the tantalising promise of pleasures still to come. Walnuts, blue veined and other richly flavoured cheeses are excellent accompaniments to Vintage Port; so too are dried fruits such as apricots or figs.
The structure is currently very dominant in this wine. Its dark tannins are concentrated, waiting for the masked black fruits to come through. Everything is there, it just needs an immense amount of time. Drink from 2030.
This offers up a dense rumble of dark currant, fig and blackberry paste flavors, laced with hints of buckwheat, baker's chocolate and warm tar. The muscular finish is thickly layered, with threads of alder and espresso cream adding definition along the way. Should be among the more long-lived wines of the vintage. Best from 2035 through 2060. 1,250 cases imported.