Today, I write to you from a position of a person with a head cold and a pile of port wine in front of me. Currently, we’re working to put together a large tasting of 2005 ports and assorted odds and ends. Our objective is to release a PDF at […]
Tawny port wine is made from red grapes aged in wood, exposing them to gradual oxidation and evaporation, for longer than a ruby port wine. As a result, the wine loses its brilliant ruby color, becoming a dark amber or a tawny hue with a characteristic “nutty” flavor imparted by the wood. Finally, through a system of fractional blending with various older port wines to match the house style, the resulting tawny wine is elegant and soft, showing delicate wood notes and rich mellow fruit.
Although there are several various kinds of tawny port wine, the two main types are: a young tawny that lacks any indication of age, and an older tawny labeled with a specific age.
Basic NV Tawny Port
Although the term “tawny’ refers to a wine that has been aged in wood for longer than ruby port wine, the majority of young tawnies are made from a blend of both red and white grapes, aged for approximately the same time as a ruby port wine. Come summer, several bulk tawnies are shipped up river to the Douro valley in cement baloes where they literally stew from the ambient heat, referred to as the Douro Bake. The Douro Bake is a traditional expression used to explain a particular characteristic imparted to Port when aged in a hot, arid climate, as opposed to the milder, cooler temperatures in Vila Nova de Gaia. Consequently, the resulting wines mature rapidly, losing their bright red color, and display a slightly brown tinge around the rim. On the palate, although lacking in the powerful fruit characteristics normally associated with a young ruby port wine, tawnies tend to be softer, more subtle, and many times, slightly more approachable.
Editor’s Note: As November is port wine month at Catavino, we’ve asked a handful of bloggers specific questions about port wine depending on their field of expertise. Andrew Barrow, the voice behind the UK wine blog, Spittoon, editor of Wine Sediments and wine distributor for UK Wines Online, was brave […]
Does the title sound familiar? Over the past few months, Dr.Vino has been posting articles with the header: Impossible Food and Wine Pairings, asking readers to suggest wines that fit the niche food, or comfort food, that we typically don’t think pair with wine. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading the suggestions […]
As we have done with both Sherry and Portuguese table wine, our goal is to provide you with a solid understanding as to what Port wine is throughout the month of November. Over the next two weeks, we will be providing you port wine profiles of each style with the […]
As a result of our recent trip to Portugal, we figured the best way to start off the month is by offering a basic road map to Portuguese wine. We have given you several articles in the past on the grape varietals, the Portuguese wine label and some specific wineries, […]
Madrid is hot. Iberia is hot. Europe is HOT! Sitting still you are bound to float away in a puddle of your own sweat if your not careful. I’ve told you before that the heat is a constant source of conversation here in Madrid. You can walk into about any […]
Ryan saw an interesting quote on a forum some time ago that read, “Port has two duties – to be red and drunk.” Fair enough, but we don’t believe that either “dry” nor “white” immediately come to the majority of people’s minds when they think of Port wine, and maybe […]
It was about 3 years ago that I first started visiting the bulletin board over at erobertparker.com. At that time, I was just starting to fall in love with wine, and I found this forum to be a good place to ask questions that I couldn’t find answers to elsewhere. […]