Leaking Port Bottle - Garrafeira

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bow
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Leaking Port Bottle - Garrafeira

Post by bow » 11:09 Tue 05 Nov 2019

I am writing to hear your views on a leaking bottle of Niepoort Garrafeira Port.

At auction i bought a bottle of Niepoort Garrafeira 1940. I received it yesterday. Unfortunately it started leaking during shipping (bad packaging and no film around the top).

Do you think I could still keep the bottle for later consumption (and if so should it be treated in some way) or should I drink it asap?

Many thanks!

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jdaw1
Cockburn 1900
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Re: Leaking Port Bottle - Garrafeira

Post by jdaw1 » 11:17 Tue 05 Nov 2019

Speak to auction house. Its bad packing is its fault.

Garrafeira is more vintage than tawny (argument expected), so I’d drink it very soon.

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AHB
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Re: Leaking Port Bottle - Garrafeira

Post by AHB » 13:27 Tue 05 Nov 2019

If the wine travelled to you by land, it's unlikely that it was bad packing which caused the leaking to start. The cork and wax should be holding the wine in the bottle and if it is has started to leak that is because the cork has started to perish. You shouldn't need to be relying on film around the top.

You have a choice, you can:
(1) Complain to the auction house that the bottle you purchased did not match the description and that they should have advised that the bottle was leaking — but they may not have known it was leaking.
(2) Open the bottle soon and (hopefully) enjoy the contents.
(3) Strip off everything from around the cork, thoroughly clean the glass neck of the bottle and rewax the bottle — and then hope that the wine was not damaged during the unknown period of time when it was leaking. If the fill level of the bottle is still good then you might be lucky and find the wine is still in excellent shape when you open the bottle and drink it.
Top Ports in 2019 (so far): Cockburn 1947 and Quinta do Noval Nacional 2017
2018 Ports of the year: São Leonardo 1927 White Port (Bottled 2018), Quinta do Noval Nacional 1994

bow
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Re: Leaking Port Bottle - Garrafeira

Post by bow » 13:58 Tue 05 Nov 2019

Thank you for your help!
The wine was bottled in 1970. Do you think the bottle could suffer from bottle shock?
(I read somewhere that bottle shock mainly occurs with recently bottled wines, but I am not entirely certain of that).

Many thanks again!

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AHB
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Re: Leaking Port Bottle - Garrafeira

Post by AHB » 22:06 Wed 06 Nov 2019

With a Garrafeira, the date the wine was "bottled" is the year it was transferred from barrel to demi-john. Somewhere you should see the year it was decanted - that's the year it was moved from demi-john to bottle. Any idea which year it was decanted?
Top Ports in 2019 (so far): Cockburn 1947 and Quinta do Noval Nacional 2017
2018 Ports of the year: São Leonardo 1927 White Port (Bottled 2018), Quinta do Noval Nacional 1994

bow
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Re: Leaking Port Bottle - Garrafeira

Post by bow » 15:07 Thu 07 Nov 2019

Certainly; it was "bottled" in 1945 and decanted in 1970.
I contacted Niepoort and sent them some pictures. They told me the leakage was nothing too serious. And advised me to store the bottle in my wine cellar and drink it within a year.

PhilW
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Re: Leaking Port Bottle - Garrafeira

Post by PhilW » 23:10 Thu 07 Nov 2019

That sounds like good advice.

One potential reason for seep may simply be the temperature differences the bottle has been through, and whether it was upright or lying down, while going to/from and at the auction house.

I would suggest keeping it upright in your cellar for a couple of days, then lie it down and check whether it continues to weep/seep. If it does weep/seep then I'd put it upright and drink within a week; if not then I'd give it a good rest lying down in the cellar for 4 or 5 months, and then open it within the year. This is all gut-feel, ofc.

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