An evening of port in Belfast

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djewesbury
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An evening of port in Belfast

Post by djewesbury » 16:00 Sun 16 Nov 2014

DRT and JCT were visiting Ireland. Justin K & PK joined us (DJ and RAB) and we spent some time together.

In the afternoon we visited the Crumlin Road Gaol, now a tourist attraction, where we were shown the condemned man's cell. In the toilet next door to the cell stands a tall dresser, which would be slid to one side at the crucial time to reveal the execution room behind. The noose and trap door were still present; then we were taken to the unmarked graves outside. Very grim. The exceptionally amusing tour guide for some reason told all present that I was him in 20 years (it turned out I know his father and drink in his pub).

We went then to Ox Cave, a new wine bar opened by the owners of Ox restaurant, where we were served Baron de Brane 2005 Margaux through a Coravin. Apparently the argon capsules only last about 10 pours. This was a surprise.

At Jewesbury Towers we christened our newly converted outbuilding. First order of business was a blind tasting of the old and new pork pies side by side — hand-chopped versus coarsely minced. Surprisingly the unanimous verdict was that the minced was firmer and had a better taste. The purchase of the mincer was vindicated. Don António will be able to rest his hands.

For dinner we enjoyed a sirloin of Irish Moiled Beef (the Dexter of Ulster) with Heidsieck Monopole Blue Top, Quinta do Noval 1997 Colheita, Château Batailley 89, Léoville Las Cases 78 and Château d'Angludet 82. Then we moved on to an Irish-bottled Taylor 1970, a Fonseca 1970 and an unknown Taylor that was lighter and more mature than the 1970 and could have been anything from 1948 to 1966. The cork only gave us the name Taylor. Also a Dow 1985 that seemed a little closed to me.

I took no notes (I was busy!) but can remember that the unknown Taylor made both the T and F 70s (which were both excellent) seem very young and fruit-forward. It was mature, though not yet fully mature, still full of soft fruit and with some taut structure and it was nothing but delicious. This was one of a batch of 'unknown Crusted's bought at auction recently by THRA and others. One will join us at The Bell on 18th Dec.

The Irish T70 appeared to have been hand-corked, with no label or capsule, in a plain brown bottle, quite translucent. This came from an auction lot split between Justin K, DJ and one other. Apparently there's more where this came from; I seem to remember a story concerning several hundred bottles split between members of a family, and T70 opened for guests at breakfast. This is the much-fabled 'Irish hospitality'.

An excellent evening, more details of which may follow. Thank you to all concerned and especially to RAB for supreme hosting and assistance above and beyond the call of duty. We hope that the fixture may be repeated often.


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Last edited by djewesbury on 21:30 Sun 16 Nov 2014, edited 4 times in total.
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djewesbury
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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by djewesbury » 16:06 Sun 16 Nov 2014

Note to self: keep a better eye on my guests' empty glasses. I hope all were filling their own liberally.


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djewesbury
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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by djewesbury » 21:41 Sun 16 Nov 2014

We remembered some details about the Taylor 1970 story. A man somewhere in Ireland buys three barrels [sic] of Taylor 1970; one is punctured by a prong (tine?) on the fork-lift at the docks and subsequently replaced. Whatever the size of these barrels, they were not pipes, as the man apparently ends up with 3000 bottles of T70, which is all he drinks for the rest of his life. After his death a few hundred are distributed amongst family; the widow runs a B&B in x where guests enquiring after port are given this self-same T70.

Would anyone like to come touring the B&Bs of {location withheld} with me?
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jdaw1
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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by jdaw1 » 22:36 Sun 16 Nov 2014

djewesbury wrote:Note to self: keep a better eye on my guests' empty glasses. I hope all were filling their own liberally.
Apologies, but I have mislaid my Kingsley Amis. From memory he says, perhaps in Everyday Drinking, approximately, that he pours his guest his first drink, and after that the guest ought to know where things are. Guests too stupid to pour their own go thirsty.

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djewesbury
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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by djewesbury » 22:38 Sun 16 Nov 2014

Thank you. That has assuaged my qualms. The beneficence of literature!


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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by djewesbury » 22:43 Sun 16 Nov 2014

Highlight of the evening: Derek thinking he had discovered an apostrophe crime amongst my personal effects, reaching for his camera and realising there was nothing to see there and moving along.


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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by jdaw1 » 23:29 Sun 16 Nov 2014

djewesbury wrote:Highlight of the evening: Derek thinking he had discovered an apostrophe crime amongst my personal effects, reaching for his camera and realising there was nothing to see there and moving along.
You had Taylor 1970 and Fonseca 1970, and that was the highlight of the evening? Something was wrong, either with the Port or with the host’s judgement.

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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by djewesbury » 23:31 Sun 16 Nov 2014

jdaw1 wrote:
djewesbury wrote:Highlight of the evening: Derek thinking he had discovered an apostrophe crime amongst my personal effects, reaching for his camera and realising there was nothing to see there and moving along.
You had Taylor 1970 and Fonseca 1970, and that was the highlight of the evening? Something was wrong, either with the Port or with the host’s judgement.
Trust me, this was the highlight. The crestfallen look on his face would have been the highlight had we been drinking Graham 48.


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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by jdaw1 » 00:02 Mon 17 Nov 2014

djewesbury wrote:Trust me, this was the highlight. The crestfallen look on his face would have been the highlight had we been drinking Graham 48.
Host’s judgement.

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DRT
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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by DRT » 09:35 Mon 17 Nov 2014

djewesbury wrote:We remembered some details about the Taylor 1970 story. A man somewhere in Ireland buys three barrels [sic] of Taylor 1970
My memory says it was six barrels, which suggests they would have been Pipes.

A splendid evening with great company. It was great to see Bri and Justin again and to meet Justin's wife Patricia. Our hosts were fabulous, even if one had to be constantly reminded by the other that he had only been asked to do one thing. The drinks and food were all fantastic but the highlight of the evening was the company, a very fitting end to an entertaining three days in Ireland. Thank you.
djewesbury wrote:We hope that the fixture may be repeated often.
I think you will find that it is already a long-established tradition.
"The first duty of Port is to be red"
Ernest H. Cockburn

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djewesbury
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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by djewesbury » 10:06 Mon 17 Nov 2014

DRT wrote:Our hosts were fabulous, even if one had to be constantly reminded by the other that he had only been asked to do one thing.
It's true. :roll:


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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by PhilW » 10:23 Mon 17 Nov 2014

djewesbury wrote:
DRT wrote:Our hosts were fabulous, even if one had to be constantly reminded by the other that he had only been asked to do one thing.
It's true. :roll:
Pour port? Drink water? Stop fondling Derek's mankini?

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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by djewesbury » 10:28 Mon 17 Nov 2014

PhilW wrote:
djewesbury wrote:
DRT wrote:Our hosts were fabulous, even if one had to be constantly reminded by the other that he had only been asked to do one thing.
It's true. :roll:
Pour port? Drink water? Stop fondling Derek's mankini?
What goes on tour..


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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by DRT » 10:56 Mon 17 Nov 2014

djewesbury wrote:What goes on tour..
Plus one.
"The first duty of Port is to be red"
Ernest H. Cockburn

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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by Justin K » 00:43 Tue 18 Nov 2014

Yes it was six barrels and it took two filling machines and a weekend with all there friends press ganged to bottle the whole lot.
Some night was had, my highlight was Daniel playing "Arthur Mc Bride" on the guitar ( his talents as a sommelier are somewhat less memorable, but Derek and I filled the gap)!

Port wise unknown Taylor, Irish bottled Taylor 1970, Fonseca 1970 and Dow 1985 (infanticide, I'm afraid, was commited)!.

Many thanks to Rachel for everything.

Some thanks to Daniel for the Leoville Las Cases and buying that Beef and the aforementioned music!

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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by DRT » 00:57 Tue 18 Nov 2014

Justin K wrote:Dow 1985 (infanticide, I'm afraid, was commited)
How was it 24 hours later? Did it still smell of bananas and taste like it was ten years old?
"The first duty of Port is to be red"
Ernest H. Cockburn

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djewesbury
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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by djewesbury » 01:01 Tue 18 Nov 2014

DRT wrote:
Justin K wrote:Dow 1985 (infanticide, I'm afraid, was commited)
How was it 24 hours later? Did it still smell of bananas and taste like it was ten years old?
I meant to make a note last night. It was softer, with more of both caramel and acidity, but still very primary. Amazing!


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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by DRT » 01:05 Tue 18 Nov 2014

djewesbury wrote:softer, with more of both caramel and acidity, but still very primary. Amazing!
Not an advert for 1985 falling off a cliff then?
"The first duty of Port is to be red"
Ernest H. Cockburn

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Re: An evening of port in Belfast

Post by djewesbury » 09:25 Tue 18 Nov 2014

This has not fallen off any cliffs. It is still climbing up through the foothills.


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