Christmas gives you an excuse to indulge in dining, sparkling wine, desserts and more. In the more category, I’d like to let you know about a few stickies (that’s the Australian term for a fortified wine they produce) and port wines that I tried at the last IVSA Trade tasting.
While these wines may appear expensive, compared to a bottle of wine, you just sip a small amount so these fortified wines will last much longer. I’d be happy to drink these wines on my own, or share with friends and family, and hope you will too.
Croft 1991 Vintage Port, Portugal ($89.49). Deep ruby in colour with no sign of aging. Cedar, flowers and plum on the nose. Very nice aromas. Medium body and medium sweetness with cherries, blackberries and spice. Long length. A very high quality wine. Note that most ports are non-vintage. A declared vintage happens in years when the grapes are of very high quality and the port produced as well from it. Not every year is a declared vintage.
Fonseca 20 Year Old Tawny Port, Portugal ($63.99). A tawny port is aged in wooden barrels, which exposes the wine to oxygen causing oxidation. As a result, these wines gradually turn to a golden-brown colour. The exposure to oxygen also imparts “nutty” flavours to the wine. This wine had caramel and roses aromas in the glass. Amazing flavour with sweet spices, nuttiness and butterscotch. Sweet but dry with a long length. I REALLY liked this wine.
Broadbent Madeira Rainwater NV, Portugal ($26.99). Have you ever tried Madeira? Madeira is a fortified Portuguese wine made in the Madeira Islands. From Wikipedia “…Madeira is noted for its unique winemaking process which involves heating the wine up to temperatures as high as 60 °C (140 °F) for an extended period of time and deliberately exposing the wine to some levels of oxidation. Because of this unique process, Madeira is a very robust wine that can be quite long lived even after being opened..” This Madeira is pale toasty orange in colour with a smoky caramel nose. Sweet with medium body, spicy and nutty, including dark chocolate flavours. A different wine to try.
Pertaringa “Full Fronti” Fortified Muscat NV, Australia ($31.99). This wine is what Australians call a “stickie”. These wines are produced from grapes that have begun to raisin on the vine. Alcohol is added before fermentation completes so that the wine still has some sugar. This sweet wine is then aged in a solera type system. Oxidation occurs during the aging process and evaporation in the hot Australian climate. The final result is a concentrated full bodied sticky sweet wine. This particular wine was light amber in colour. Big aromas in the glass of orange, caramel and spices. Medium body, sweet with caramel, spices, nuttiness and orange. Lots of flavour and lots of fun. I was told that this wine is available at Firefly on Cambie at 12th Ave. in Vancouver.
Enjoy Christmas, and enjoy these dessert style wines.
Are you interested in having a wine tasting of fortified wines? Contact me at mywinepal.