Friday, February 18, 2011

Wine Friday!

With all this cold weather we had we've had the fireplace fired up and it has brought me back to one of my all time favorite wines. Port.

I love it all the time but when it was so cold and you have the fire going you can't help but imagine yourself like some stuffy old rich English dude sitting by the fire at the lodge drinking me some port.

Port sales have been horrendous which is good news for those of us who love it. They still fetch a pretty penny but nothing like the rapidly escalating price of Bordeaux or cult cabs. Of all the wines Port ages the best, the most gracefully, and frankly in the most forgiving way.

There are great stories and traditions that go along with port. One of my favorites is the "Bishop of London". The English will tell you that tradition hold that a decanter of port is put in front of the host and then he pours first for the person on his right and then passes it his left. It should be passed continuously until it gone. If someone stops passing it the host will ask that person, "Do you know the Bishop of London?" and then proceed to say, "he was a nice old chap but he never passed the port." This was nice way of saying...Faux pas and pass the port jackwagon!

There are several styles of port and I could bore you to bloggy tears on the subject but today for my wine of the week I'll stick with one we've been drinking. Graham's 10 year Tawny Port.

One of the things I love about Tawny port is that they are stable and don't need to be finished in one night. Once opened they will last for at least a month and still taste the same. Unlike vintage port that get all the attention, tawny doesn't improve with further age.

Another thing is that they are versatile. In the summer you can put a little chill on them and they taste awesome....or room temp when it is a bit colder.

This is potent 20% alcohol so small portions and better to consume at home or have a driver. I like having it instead of dessert when I go out. Expect like a 2-3 ounce serving.

The Graham 10 Year Tawny has wonderful fruit aromas of ripe raspberry and some dried fruits as well. It has a beautiful florals as well. Then you get into the cocoa and vanilla bean richness and actually a creaminess. It is rich and pure pleasure to drink and the alcohol gives you that warm feeling all over your love when it is cold out. With food, I love a creme brulee with some fresh fruit on it. I also like walnuts, figs, strong cheeses. Delish.

Expect to pay about $30 for a bottle but again since you should....he he.....drink smaller servings it should last a while. I tend to over consume going back 2 or 3 times for refills. Port hangovers are brutal so be careful.

If you never have tried it I highly recommend it. Cheers. By the way....don't be tempted to try and save a couple bucks on domestic ports or even Australian ports. The best port still comes from Portugal. Period. My favorite producers are Dow, Warre, Graham, Taylor, Fonseca.

Vaya Con Dios.

1 comment:

Mo Rage said...

If you get to the R Bar in the West Bottoms, have their port. I have no idea the label but it was outstanding to the point of magnificent.