TN: 1988 Niepoort Colheita Porto, Douro
1988 Niepoort Colheita Porto, bottled in 2008, Douro:
Produced from a blend of Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Francisca, Tinta Amarela, Sousão, Tinta Roriz and other grape varieties, averaging some 60 years of age, from various sources within the Douro region; the grapes are hand-harvested, and traditionally fermented in lagares.
Pale tawny in color, with hints of red brick as well as brown and orange; the bouquet is elegant and complex, delicate yet with a subtle power and intensity (as opposed to opulent and overpowering), with dried fruits, tangerine and orange peels, toasted hazelnuts and a hint of tea (anyone remember "Constant Comment"?); in the mouth, the wine has a silky texture with surprising (given the time in wood) fruit, coupled with spice, mineral accents, toasted nuts, toffee, caramel and more, all carrying through the incredibly long finish; there is good acidity here, some (but not too much) residual, and layers and layers of complexity. Excellent, etherial, and just a complete joy . . .
Colheitas are Tawny Ports from a single harvest -- in this case, all from 1988. (FWIW, I've also recently had the 1990 and the 1996 Niepoort Colheitas, too.)
There is no need to decant, in terms of sediment, though you may wish to decant and serve just for presentation . . . as well as for the Bishop of Norwich.
With almost all Tawny Ports, the sediment has been "thrown" in the barrels, and little should remain in the bottle.
However, I like Jason's "presentation" idea, and might adopt that - just for a bit of show.
PS - Just had this Colheita at Campton Place, and it WAS delightful with my cheese course, and my wife' chocolate-influenced dessert.
Sorry that I just got back to this thread.
We did the Chef Michael Mina & Dirk Niepoort event at Blackberry Farm, and were blessed that Dirk brought out his entire portfolio. We were particularly fortunate, as we arrived about 4 days early, and Dirk had sent many cases ahead, to go onto the wine list, prior to the wines for the event. What a treat! There were wines, that a poor boy from Mississippi was just not meant to ever taste, but I did.
Thanks for the fond memories.