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Vintage Port 2011

Vintage Port 2011

While I have specialised in the wines of the Loire Valley and Bordeaux for more years than I care to count, it would be wrong to assume I have no interest in other regions, or that I never taste or drink wines from these other regions. Indeed, I find it healthy to occasionally venture outside my comfort zone, tasting wines which have common themes with the Loire Valley and Bordeaux, as well as those which provide a complete contrast.

I think it might be difficult to find a style of wine which provides a greater contrast with the likes of Muscadet and Margaux than the fortified wines of the Douro, in Portugal. It is my persistent interest in this region that prompted me to bring forward a body of tasting notes from the old Winedoctor site into The Archive. And also to go off piste with today’s report, looking at half a dozen wines from the 2011 vintage.

Vintage Port 2011

The Season

Looking back to the 2011 season it is difficult to imagine more perfect conditions for the production of top-quality vintage Port. Winter rains topped up the water table, vital for the warm and dry summer which was to follow. Mild conditions early in the season prompted an early budbreak, setting the scene for an early harvest. The conditions remained favourable throughout the summer, with warm weather in June and July, with a troublesome spike of heat in late June, followed by more heat in August. Rain in late August and early September was welcomed, and saw the vines through to the end of the season.

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