Unknown bottles

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lindamburns
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Unknown bottles

Post by lindamburns » 17:15 Fri 02 Jan 2015

My son was given two bottles of port by a lady from Painshill House, believed to be around 60 years old. There are no labels on the bottles but they have clearly been there a long time. Is there a way of identifying them if we were to supply photographs of the bottles and the seal on the top of the bottles?

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DRT
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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by DRT » 17:26 Fri 02 Jan 2015

Hi,

Yes, we might be able to identify them if you post some pictures.

It is sometimes possible to read the branding on the cork if you shine a very bright light (LED torch or similar) at the next of the bottle, but only if the neck isn't covered by a capsule.

Derek
"The first duty of Port is to be red"

Ernest H. Cockburn

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DRT
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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by DRT » 17:27 Fri 02 Jan 2015

There is advice on how to post pictures in this thread: http://www.theportforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=8816
"The first duty of Port is to be red"

Ernest H. Cockburn

lindamburns
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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by lindamburns » 18:37 Fri 02 Jan 2015

Thank you, Photographs- Part 1of 2: Please let me know if you can see them.

Regards, Linda.
photo 1a.jpg
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photo 2a.jpg
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lindamburns
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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by lindamburns » 18:39 Fri 02 Jan 2015

Photogrpahs- Part 2 of 2: Please let me know if you can see them.

Regards, Linda
photo 3a.jpg
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photo 4a.jpg
photo 4a.jpg (96.89 KiB) Viewed 2997 times

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DRT
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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by DRT » 18:56 Fri 02 Jan 2015

Linda,

Yes, we can see the pictures.

These bottles look like what is known as a BOB (Buyer's Own Brand) bottled by Berry Brothers & Rudd, a very reputable London wine merchant.

The Port in the bottle will have been produced by a top class producer and then sold under Berry Brothers name. I can't be certain but I think there is a link between the colour of the capsules they use and the producer who made the Port. I think pink capsules are used for Warre ports and white capsules for Graham's.

I would normally expect to see the year of the vintage stamped on the capsule so I suspect these are not Vintage Ports. They could be standard Ruby or Crusted ports.

Port has been bottled in Portugal from the early 1970s so these bottles are probably from the 1960s or earlier.

What do you intend doing with them?

Derek
"The first duty of Port is to be red"

Ernest H. Cockburn

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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by lindamburns » 19:00 Fri 02 Jan 2015

I have absolutely no idea. As I said previosuly, my son was given them. He is only 22 years old so has no idea about port or any such things. Initially, I think identification would be preferred if at all possible. What would you recommend?

Regards, Linda.

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DRT
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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by DRT » 19:07 Fri 02 Jan 2015

My recommendation would be to send those pictures or Berry Brothers and ask them if they are able to give a more precise identification. If convenient it might be better to take the bottles into the shop at 3 St James's Street in London.

Their contact details can be found on their website http://www.bbr.com

Best of luck

Derek
"The first duty of Port is to be red"

Ernest H. Cockburn

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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by lindamburns » 19:10 Fri 02 Jan 2015

Thank you for your help. I'll let you know if I do manage to find out anything.

Regards, Linda.

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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by LGTrotter » 19:36 Fri 02 Jan 2015

Had a look in the cupboard and they look identical to some port that was sold as Warre 1970. The corks were clearly marked Warre 1970 when I opened them. I think it is a vintage port but Derek may be right. I think 1970 was the last vintage bottled in England so it will be 1970 or earlier, but probably not much earlier.

If you were to drink one you might get a better idea from the cork.

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RAYC
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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by RAYC » 09:35 Sun 01 Feb 2015

DRT wrote:Linda,

Yes, we can see the pictures.

These bottles look like what is known as a BOB (Buyer's Own Brand) bottled by Berry Brothers & Rudd, a very reputable London wine merchant.

The Port in the bottle will have been produced by a top class producer and then sold under Berry Brothers name. I can't be certain but I think there is a link between the colour of the capsules they use and the producer who made the Port. I think pink capsules are used for Warre ports and white capsules for Graham's.

I would normally expect to see the year of the vintage stamped on the capsule so I suspect these are not Vintage Ports. They could be standard Ruby or Crusted ports.

Port has been bottled in Portugal from the early 1970s so these bottles are probably from the 1960s or earlier.

What do you intend doing with them?

Derek
If I were guessing, I'd say the bottle with the pink capsule in a 1970 vintage port. Hard to be more specific though (and I doubt the people in the BBR store will be able to without removing the capsule and using a torch) - pink capsules were used by Berry's in a number of their 1970 bottlings - Fonseca, Cockburn, Graham, and the BBR "Own Selection" (a junior blend of Warre, possibly using young vines). But BBR's bottling of Dow 1970 used red capsules so this wan't universal, and BBR's bottling of 1963 Croft used pink (and then 1966 Croft used blue), so I don't think they took a particularly methodical approach.

Not sure about the one with the white capsule - though I have seen a couple of 1963s with white capsules (Taylor, Sandeman)
Rob C.

PhilW
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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by PhilW » 10:30 Sun 01 Feb 2015

DRT wrote:The Port in the bottle will have been produced by a top class producer and then sold under Berry Brothers name. I can't be certain but I think there is a link between the colour of the capsules they use and the producer who made the Port. I think pink capsules are used for Warre ports and white capsules for Graham's.

I would normally expect to see the year of the vintage stamped on the capsule so I suspect these are not Vintage Ports. They could be standard Ruby or Crusted ports.
Derek is not correct here; on the Berry Bros capsules, the year is not usually shown. From the images in my collection I can see there also doesn't seem to be a consistent colour per shipper between years either. I have photos of identically marked capsules with the following colour/year-shipper combinations:

White: Taylor 1963
Blue: Graham 1963
Pink/Red: Croft 1963, Taylor 1966
Light pink: Fonseca 1970 (top of capsule not confirmed), Berry's Own 1970 (Warre) (top of capsule design not known)

Note that pink may simply be faded red, rather than a separate colour, and that others have stated Warre 1970 bottled by BBR was also red, which I have not seen (Owen please send me a pic of bottle and capsule top if you have one for the VPID please!).

My best guess would be that these are probably Taylor 1963 and possibly Taylor 1966.

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DRT
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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by DRT » 11:35 Sun 01 Feb 2015

{eating-humble-pie}
"The first duty of Port is to be red"

Ernest H. Cockburn

PhilW
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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by PhilW » 11:48 Sun 01 Feb 2015

RAYC wrote:pink capsules were used by Berry's in a number of their 1970 bottlings - Fonseca, Cockburn, Graham, and the BBR "Own Selection" (a junior blend of Warre, possibly using young vines). But BBR's bottling of Dow 1970 used red capsules so this wan't universal, and BBR's bottling of 1963 Croft used pink (and then 1966 Croft used blue), so I don't think they took a particularly methodical approach.

Not sure about the one with the white capsule - though I have seen a couple of 1963s with white capsules (Taylor, Sandeman)
[off-topic aside to RAYC]Your comment on the Berry's Own Selection 1970 - "junior" Warre is intriguing - do you have any more info?
Good memory on the other colours btw, unless you have other photos you need to send to me ;)

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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by JB vintage » 15:10 Sun 05 Apr 2015

I am intrigued as well about Junior blend. BBR 1970 was Warre but "junior" blend I have not heard about. I have assumed that this was a specific barrel of the ordinary Warre 1970 vintage, perhaps a selection of a lower standard barrel.


PhilW wrote:
RAYC wrote:pink capsules were used by Berry's in a number of their 1970 bottlings - Fonseca, Cockburn, Graham, and the BBR "Own Selection" (a junior blend of Warre, possibly using young vines). But BBR's bottling of Dow 1970 used red capsules so this wan't universal, and BBR's bottling of 1963 Croft used pink (and then 1966 Croft used blue), so I don't think they took a particularly methodical approach.

Not sure about the one with the white capsule - though I have seen a couple of 1963s with white capsules (Taylor, Sandeman)
[off-topic aside to RAYC]Your comment on the Berry's Own Selection 1970 - "junior" Warre is intriguing - do you have any more info?
Good memory on the other colours btw, unless you have other photos you need to send to me ;)

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Re: Unknown bottles

Post by RAYC » 21:14 Wed 27 May 2015

JB vintage wrote:I am intrigued as well about Junior blend. BBR 1970 was Warre but "junior" blend I have not heard about. I have assumed that this was a specific barrel of the ordinary Warre 1970 vintage, perhaps a selection of a lower standard barrel.


PhilW wrote:
RAYC wrote:pink capsules were used by Berry's in a number of their 1970 bottlings - Fonseca, Cockburn, Graham, and the BBR "Own Selection" (a junior blend of Warre, possibly using young vines). But BBR's bottling of Dow 1970 used red capsules so this wan't universal, and BBR's bottling of 1963 Croft used pink (and then 1966 Croft used blue), so I don't think they took a particularly methodical approach.

Not sure about the one with the white capsule - though I have seen a couple of 1963s with white capsules (Taylor, Sandeman)
[off-topic aside to RAYC]Your comment on the Berry's Own Selection 1970 - "junior" Warre is intriguing - do you have any more info?
Good memory on the other colours btw, unless you have other photos you need to send to me ;)
Well, it must have been a specific barrel or set of barrels I suppose, inasmuch as BBR were bottling it in the UK (the first and last vintage of VP to be bottled at their Basingstoke premises, I believe).

I'm not 100% certain where I heard this, but I believe it was from Cynthia Jensen (who brought a bottle of it to this tasting and, since she was working for the Symingtons at that time, had done some prior research).

If there was a batch of Warre made up from the younger or non-prime vines, that does not seem to me to be inconsistent with your statement that it was a lower standard barrel.
Rob C.

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