Dow's Vintage Port 2011 Front Label
Dow's Vintage Port 2011 Front LabelDow's Vintage Port 2011 Front Bottle ShotDow's Vintage Port 2011 Back Bottle Shot

Dow's Vintage Port 2011

Port from Portugal
  • WS99
  • RP98
  • W&S97
  • JS96
  • WE96
750ML / 20% ABV
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4.4 6 Ratings
750ML / 20% ABV

Winemaker Notes

#1 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2014

Aromatic and floral, with an excellent balance of fruit, tannin and acidity. The palate starts off with fresh green figs and ends with bitter chocolate. There is fresh acidity and a notable minerality, and no hint of any raisining or overripeness on the very long finish.

Dow's 2011 Vintage Port can be enjoyed anytime and pairs wonderfully with chocolate desserts and hard cheeses like matureCheddar or even with a soft goat's cheese.

Critical Acclaim

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WS 99
Wine Spectator
Powerful, refined and luscious, with a surplus of dark plum, kirschand cassis flavors that are unctuous and long. Shows plenty of grip, presenting a long, full finish, filled with Asian spice and raspberry tart accents. Rich and chocolaty. One for the ages.
RP 98
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2011 Dow Vintage Port was made from no less than 44 separate ferments from finest fruit sourced from Quinta do Bomfim (35% of the blend), Quinta da Senhora da Ribeira (42%) and the Santinho (14%) and Cerdeira (6%) estates. Just six of the best lots were used in the final blend, which consists of 40% Touriga Franca, 36% Touriga Nacional, 10% Sousao and 14% of old vine plantings. It has a beautiful, quite extravagant bouquet with copious black and red fruit, Indian spice, and hints of menthol and orange rind that unfold wonderfully in the glass. The palate is a sumptuous affair, one that is beautifully balanced with velvety smooth, plump tannins, copious black fruit with a harmonious, white pepper-tinged finish that is a decadent delight. This is one of the finest of the declarations of 2011 Vintage Ports, a sublime expression of the vintage you would be foolish not to buy. This is Dow at its best.
Range: 96-98
W&S 97
Wine & Spirits
Dow's Vintage is often on release, a kernal of impacted flavor. This vintage is more like a perfect sphere. All the elements are there, from plump, superripe fruit to polished schist tannins, suspended in a round, complete integration that refuses to break apart. Smoky, bright, luscious and bold, it's a wine that's easy t o imagine being still fresh and complex at 50 years old, and it's not a reach to believe it will live well to 80 or 100. this is a blend of Cima Corgo fruit from Bomfim and Duoro Superior power from Senhora da Ribeira.
JS 96
James Suckling
Wow. What a sexy nose with aromas of crushed berries, wet earth and pebbles. Full body, medium sweet with an intense and powerful finish. A vintage Port that leaves an impression. 5,000 cases produced of this mechanically trodden wine. Try in 2023.
WE 96
Wine Enthusiast
A powerfully dense wine, solidly based on dry tannins and rich black fruit. Structure, fruit and acidity all come together in a wine that shows immense potential as well as a softer side now.
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Dow's

Dow's

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Dow's, Portugal
Dow's Dow's Quinta do Bomfim Visitor Center Winery Image

For over two centuries the name of DOW has been associated with the finest Port from the vineyards of the Upper Douro Valley. Throughout the 20th Century and into the 21st, the Symington family has built on the legacy of the preceding Silva and Dow families. Generations of Symington winemakers have worked at the Dow’s vineyards: Quinta do Bomfim and Quinta da Senhora da Ribeira, creating from them Dow’s superbly concentrated wines that are intense and tannic when young, maturing towards a superlative racy elegance with age and scented with violet and mint aromas. Dow’s attractive and distinctive drier finish is the recognizable hallmark of the wines from this great Port house.

The story of Dow’s is unusual amongst all the great Port houses. It began in 1798 when Bruno da Silva, a Portuguese merchant from Oporto, made a journey which was the opposite to that of the first British merchants. Bruno set up in London from where he imported wine from his native country. He married an Englishwoman and was rapidly assimilated into London society where his business acumen led to a fine reputation for his wines. But the outbreak of the Napoleonic wars put his business in jeopardy. Undaunted, Bruno da Silva applied for ‘letters of marque’ (Royal Assent to equip a merchant ship with guns) to secure safe passage of his Port from Oporto to Bristol and to London. His became the first and only Port company to transport its precious cargo of casks of fine Ports under its own armed protection across the treacherous Bay of Biscay, a strong dissuasion to attack during a period when less audacious companies saw their sales dwindle away.

The Port shipping business was continued by Bruno’s son, John da Silva who in 1862 brought into partnership Frederick William Cosens. Together with John’s son, Edward, they became the active partners in Silva & Cosens. Edward da Silva inherited his grandfather’s business ability and the company continued to prosper. Edward became a highly respected figure in the London wine trade and was one of the founders of the Wine Trade Benevolent Society, the leading charity which survives to this day as the principal British wine trade organisation. Edward da Silva was to be the Benevolent’s chairman and then, from 1892, its president for many years.

With the continuing expansion of the firm, Edward da Silva and Frederick Cosens were joined by George Acheson Warre, whose well known family had been involved in the Port trade since its earliest years. ‘GAW’ joined as partner in 1868 and became its driving force in Portugal.

In 1877, Silva & Cosens merged with another leading Port company, Dow & Co, who’s senior partner was James Ramsay Dow, who had made a name for himself in 1856 with the publication of his important treatise, ‘An Inquiry into the Vine Fungus with Suggestions as to a Remedy.’ The Oidium fungus was at the time devastating the Douro’s vineyards.

Although smaller than Silva & Cosens, Dow & Co had become a very highly regarded Port producer with a particularly fine reputation for its Vintage Ports and when the two companies merged, it was decided to adopt DOW’S as the brand name.

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Best known for intense, impressive and age-worthy fortified wines, Portugal relies almost exclusively on its many indigenous grape varieties. Bordering Spain to its north and east, and the Atlantic Ocean on its west and south coasts, this is a land where tradition reigns supreme, due to its relative geographical and, for much of the 20th century, political isolation. A long and narrow but small country, Portugal claims considerable diversity in climate and wine styles, with milder weather in the north and significantly more rainfall near the coast.

While Port (named after its city of Oporto on the Atlantic Coast at the end of the Douro Valley), made Portugal famous, Portugal is also an excellent source of dry red and white wines of various styles.

The Douro Valley produces full-bodied and concentrated dry red wines made from the same set of grape varieties used for Port, which include Touriga Nacional, Tinta Roriz (Spain’s Tempranillo), Touriga Franca, Tinta Barroca and Tinto Cão, among a long list of others in minor proportions.

Other dry wines include the tart, slightly effervescent Vinho Verde white wine, made in the north, and the bright, elegant reds and whites of the Dão as well as the bold, and fruit-driven reds and whites of the southern, Alentejo.

The nation’s other important fortified wine, Madeira, is produced on the eponymous island off the North African coast.

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Port is a sweet, fortified wine with numerous styles: Ruby, Tawny, Vintage, Late Bottled Vintage (LBV), White, Colheita, and a few unusual others. It is blended from from the most important red grapes of the Douro Valley, based primarily on Touriga Nacional with over 80 other varieties approved for use. Most Ports are best served slightly chilled at around 55-65°F.

PBC9167489_2011 Item# 125741

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