Saturday, December 26, 2009

Woodbury Alexander Valley Old Vines Vintage Port, 1979

Port or Vinho do Porto is fortified wine in the Portuguese style, of course, and true Port has always been priced reasonably enough that I am rarely tempted to buy look-alikes from California, Michigan, South Africa or Australia. This wine I bought more than 25 years ago because it had been marked down from $9.95 to $1.99. At that time--and even 10 years ago--it had a greenish, weedy quality to the aromas and flavors so powerful that it was disagreeable to drink. That may have been the reason it was marked down so drastically. After 30 years, the green quality is still there but it has faded into the background, and the result is a lush dessert wine.

It's a medium light brownish ruby, about the color of tawny Port. I still smell some greens, similar to what might be expected from a New World Merlot or Carmenere--not at all unattractive. Also burnt sugar, toffee, caramel, walnuts. This is more like a tawny Port or an Australian Muscat than a vintage Port, but it is very nice.

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