As promised, #vinopourfavor here reporting live from #Porto, #Portugal! I have learned SO much about Port–first and foremost, that I actually like it! A lot, even! Pictured here is a tasting from #kopke, the #oldestportwinery established in 1638. The other really surprising thing to me is that Port is so parallel to Champagne in so many ways. Ports are usually a blend of grapes from different years that winemakers combine to get the most even expression for that wine. Sound familiar? However, there is an association that will declare when a particular year is exceptional and a single year vintage (ruby port only) is produced. Port is also only produced in the #Duoro River Valley, just like Champagne is only from the Champagne region in France. Here are some other facts I learned:
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?The Duoro River Valley was declared a #Unesco World Heritage site in 2001.
?They do not use machinery in harvesting in Duoro due to lack of space.
?There are 4 kinds of Port: white, ruby, tawny, and rosé. Tawny is the most exported, with white and ruby being exported in much smaller quantities. Rosé port can only be found here in Portugal and is produced exactly like Rosé wine–by letting the grape juice have much less contact with the skins so that it doesn’t become a ruby port (similar to how rosé wine will become red wine if contact is more prolonged).
?Ruby and Tawny are both red ports, but ruby is aged in large vats for only 4-6 yrs. it is a dark red color with a fruitier flavor profile. Tawny port is aged in a large vat for 3 yrs and then in barrels for 5 yrs up to 70 yrs! The more it is aged, the more the flavor becomes more complex (less fruity, more vanilla, spices) and the color becomes more amber and transparent.
?This is important! If you want to age port, it has to be a ruby. Tawny port is filtered before bottled, so without sulfites it will only last 8-10 years before the quality begins to deteriorate. If you want to buy something you can age, buy a ruby single harvest/vintage port. It is unfiltered, so it can age for YEARS. However once open, best to drink that same day or within the next few days max. All other ports can last once opened for 8 mos to a year!