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Quinta do Noval Vintage Port 2011

Port from Portugal
  • RP97
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    0% ABV
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      0% ABV

      Winemaker Notes

      Very seductive. Lovely fresh floral notes on the nose, many delicate complex aromas. Violets. Wonderful purity and fresh precision of fruit. Intense concentration, but delicate at the same time. Fine long tannins.

      Critical Acclaim

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      RP 97
      Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
      The 2011 Vintage Port is a blend of 60% Touriga Nacional, 30% Touriga Francesa and 10% Tinto Cão, all aged for 18 months in wood. It comes in at 101.2 grams per liter of residual sugar. It opens with understatement, but that doesn't last long. Showing pure power on the finish, this otherwise elegant Noval (especially refined in the mid-palate) shows itself to be in fine form as it airs out. Pointed, graceful and a bit drying, this is built for the long haul. It's a Port you need to cellar. It will one day gain complexity, open more fully and become more interesting. That day is not today, although if you air it out long enough, the fine fruit and flavor eventually come through. By the end of the week, this was actually possible to drink, although even then, as it sat in the glass, it became tighter and slightly astringent--showing off its power and intensity. Its firmness and underlying concentration are beautifully matched by the fruit, though. The balance is impeccable. If you have some old school patience, snap this up by the case. It may be accessible younger than I suggest, but this is a Port that should be put away for a couple of decades, or more, for best results.
      WS 97
      Wine Spectator
      Vibrant, with luscious yet elegant mineral-infused flavors of dark currant, ripe cherry, green fig and raspberry. Shows ample pepper notes, with the tannins offering plenty of muscle and grip on the long, silky finish. Complex and restrained.
      JS 93
      James Suckling
      Blueberry and wet earth aromas. Full body, medium sweet and a long finish. Balanced and refined. 2,000 cases produced of this foot-trodden wine. Try in 2022.
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      Quinta do Noval

      Quinta do Noval

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      Quinta do Noval, Portugal
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      One of the oldest port houses, Quinta do Noval is also arguably the greatest. It is unique among top port houses in that most of the ports are made from estate-grown fruit and, notably, all of the vintage Noval wines are from the single Quinta do Noval vineyard. In addition, it is difficult to elaborate on Quinta do Noval without mentioning Nacional, the legendary port made from a 6 acre parcel of ungrafted vines. When declared, only 200-300 cases of Nacional will be made, and instantly become the most sought after port in the world. Many vintages of Nacional are considered as the finest ports, and some of the finest wines, ever made.

      Noval is mentioned in land registries going back to 1715, and has been sold just twice in that time, once in the late 19th century, and to its present owners in 1993. Noval has, however, a reputation for being an innovative, independent producer. Noval’s focus on its vineyard and estate ports distinguishes it, but there are numerous other areas in which it has been a pioneer:

      • Noval was the first to introduce stencilled bottles in the 1920s.
      • Noval pioneered the concept of Old Tawnies with an indication of age.
      • In 1958, Noval was the first to introduce a late-bottled vintage (LBV).

      The astonishing terraced vineyards of Noval, perched above the Douro and Pinhao rivers, are an infertile schist, and not soil as much as sheer rock. The elevation of the vineyards goes from just above river level to 1,200 feet, with density at about 2,000 vines per acre, and vines producing on average 30-35 hectoliters per hectare. The tremendous rewards of the work done at the estate over the last fifteen years are visible across the range of Noval ports, and have placed Noval a step ahead of everyone in the Douro.

      Portugal

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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 Duoro 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.

      Blended from the most important red grapes of the Duoro Valley, Port is the famous fortified wine from Portugal. It is based on the Touriga Nacional grape with over 80 other varieties approved for use in the blend. However, typically about four other varieties play a major role: Tinta Barroca, Tinta Cão, Tinta Roriz (Tempranillo) and Touriga Francesa. Other wine regions of the world can produce fortified wine of a similar style from the same grapes or other grapes.

      There are numerous styles of Port: Ruby, Tawny, Vintage, LBV, White, Colheita, and a few unusual others.

      Ruby ports usually pack the most value and are ready to drink once bottled. Typical characteristics are ripe cherry and blackberry flavors with stewed plums, cocoa and dates.

      Tawny ports are “tawny” in color and have flavors of toffee, caramel, toasted pecans, vanilla, dried apricot, citrus peel, green figs and roasted espresso. The age designation on a Tawny Port indicates the average vintage age of the grapes in the bottle.

      When Port is made with high quality grapes selected from a single notable vintage, it is called Vintage Port. Some of the best recent vintages are 2011, 2009, 2007, 2003, 2000, 1997 and 1994. Vintage Ports are complex and full-bodied with many flavors possible: concentrated blackberry, black cherry, raspberry and spice, smoke, coffee and chocolate.

      LBV Port comes from a single-vintage Ruby Port and may spend six years in the barrel before being bottled. These are ready to drink upon release. Serve most Ports slightly chilled at around 55-65°F.

      TON9701711_2011 Item# 125722