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Wed 12 September — 2016

Posted: 12:07 Thu 13 Sep 2018
by AHB
On Wednesday 12th September, a group of us got together to taste the 2016 vintage from 20 different shippers. These samples were tasted sighted, from bottles which were opened shortly before being tasted, but which were revisited over the course of about 4 hours.

A special thank you to Tony Carter of Vintage Wine & Port, who coordinated with the producers and organised samples to be provided for us on the night.

My overall impression of the vintages is that there are two distinct styles of ports made from the harvest. Symington wines, Noval and Sogrape (at least the Sandeman and Offley) are deep and rich with sweet fruit and distinct tannins. Fladgate Partnership wines and those from some of the other producers were much more elegant and balanced with high levels of acidity that promise a long and refined future. I loved the Taylor, which was typical of the elegant style and which I found to be very unusual in style for that house.

The wines tasted were:

Re: Wed 12 September — 2016

Posted: 17:12 Thu 13 Sep 2018
by flash_uk
Many thanks to both Tony for organising and the producers who kindly shared bottles with us to taste. The format for the tasting worked very well I thought, with bottles opened and available in the middle of the table for self-pouring.

On the whole I thought that the majority of these ports were a little short of the weight and body I was expecting at this youthful age. I also thought that the fruit intensity was not as full as expected in many. The colours were more towards deep red than inky purple.

This is the first time I have tasted a new release with this quantity of ports side by side. I look forward to a tasting sometime around 2038 to see how they have evolved!

Re: Wed 12 September — 2016

Posted: 16:40 Sat 15 Sep 2018
by jdaw1
Thank you to Tony for organising and bringing bottles, and to the shippers for providing samples.

As Alex wrote, there seem to be two styles. One was rich and sweet and very much my type of port; the other emphasised acidity — which is less to my taste. For me the sweet wines were like a slightly lighter 1985. It is a very fair declaration, and will make fine drinking from 2040-2060, but will not be one of the greats of the century. My favourites were Capela da Vesuvio, Skeffington and Warre; with honourable mentions to Croft, Sandeman, Offley, Cockburn, Smith Woodhouse, Graham, Vesuvio, and Noval.

Re: Wed 12 September — 2016

Posted: 07:45 Tue 18 Sep 2018
by forest26

WIne of the Night: Vesuvio Capella (21 points)
Runner Up: Taylors (12 Points)

GST (11)
W (5.5)
D (4.5)
Sk (3)
S (2)
N (2)
NiB (2)
G (2)
O 1
Ms 1

Not scored but Honorable mentions

Re: Wed 12 September — 2016

Posted: 08:06 Tue 18 Sep 2018
by forest26
For me this is a solid vintage that is worthy of a declaration. Compared to the '11 vintage at this stage the wines are of lighter body and colour. Whilst laking the immediate 'wow' factor of the 11's these are more nuanced and perhaps more reflective of the winemakers skill. Yields were small and there was a lot of selection often from small plots in vineyards. Unusually there is a wide difference between the Capella and the Vesuvio with the former scoring the Wine of the Night. The few examples we had from small shippers showed well.

Re: Wed 12 September — 2016

Posted: 20:46 Tue 09 Oct 2018
by AHB
I've just finished creating threads for all of the 2016 wines we tasted last month and links to each of the tasting notes from the first post in this review thread.

Please post your notes and your thoughts in the appropriate place. The more we discuss the wines we tasted and the more tasting notes we have of each of them, the greater our credibility when we ask for samples in June 2019. Incidentally, when I was in Portugal a couple of weeks ago every one of the producers I met said that they would send samples to us if we asked them to.

Re: Wed 12 September — 2016

Posted: 15:31 Sun 04 Nov 2018
by Doggett
Firstly a huge thank you to Tony for organising this tasting and for all of the producers and also Tom for sharing the bottles with us. It is the first time that I have had a comprehensive tasting of a young vintage port. I have tasted quite a few of the 2015s on release as I did with some of the 2011s, but previous to that I have only had some 1994s on release. So my experience at judging the ageing potential is certainly not the same as some of the group.

I found all of the ports to be much more approachable than I expected. From memory there was far more tannin showing on the 2011s I had at a similar point in their evolution, almost to the level that an evening off 20 of them would have been very hard to taste through constructively. These 2016s were very drinkable and smooth and in the main delicious to enjoy now. I was very worried about palate fatigue before the evening but it never proved to be the case. It is hard to judge without the chance to compare the vintages side by side, but I feel that the 2015s I have tasted as a group are collectively better than the 16s, but obviously there are several exceptions to that.

All were very nice on the evening but some really stood out such as the Capella, Graham's, Taylor's, Sandeman and Warre. There was also one that stood out on its own with a unique flavour profile which was the Niepoort Bioma.

All in all it was a great night, with wonderful company, and very educational for me. Thanks again to everyone involved in the set up and to the B&F team for their superb service as always. I very much hope that this maybe an annual event, so i can build up more knowledge and experience of the VPs on release and hopefully monitor their progression and ageing in the coming years too. I have finally got around to posting my notes and I look forward to reading more from the night soon.