On Tuesday 2 December 2016 we were treated to a fascinating tasting of Tawny Ports presented by our Chairman, Jeffrey Benson at the Doubletree Hilton Hotel, Victoria. Unlike Vintage Port, which spends years developing in bottle and then needs to be decanted, Tawny Ports with an indication of age spend their time developing in oak casts, throwing their sediment, and so do not require decanting. These are the finest of all Tawny Ports, being exceptionally complex and concentrated. The stated age is the average age of the blend.
Jeffrey produced eight stunning wines for us. The evening commenced with a c.1920/1930 Delaforce Special White Port, which amazed us all with its vibrancy and freshness, followed by a Gould Campbell 10 year old, a Delaforce “Curious and Ancient” Limited Release 20 year old, and a Robertsons Imperial 20 year old (bottled 1989). We then enjoyed four different ages of Taylor’s Tawny – 10 year old, 20 year old, 30 year old, and 40 year old, all bottled in 1979 – a century’s worth of amber delight, with sensations of caramel, walnuts, honey and orange, each glass getting richer and more concentrated than its predecessor.
The tasting was accompanied by a selection of Cheese, Salad and French bread.
This was a hugely enjoyable evening, and a timely reminder of just how delicious Tawny Ports can be. I am quite certain that all those who attended would be more than delighted if some age-indicated Tawny Port were to turn up in their Christmas stocking.