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TN: 1988 Niepoort Colheita Porto, Douro

zin1953 Mar 16, 2010 01:12 PM

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 . . .


  1. Porthos Nov 21, 2011 09:20 AM

    Jason. Just got my hands on a bottle of this and would like to open it for Thanksgiving dinner.

    Does this need to decanted? For sediment? For it to develop? Or is it pop and pour?


    5 Replies
    1. re: Porthos
      zin1953 Nov 21, 2011 09:37 AM

      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.

      1. re: Porthos
        Bill Hunt Nov 21, 2011 08:51 PM

        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.

        1. re: Bill Hunt
          zin1953 Nov 21, 2011 09:02 PM

          So you know the Bishop of Norwich, do you?

          1. re: zin1953
            Bill Hunt Sep 14, 2012 08:21 PM

            Well, there are few Bishops, who would claim to know me, and that goes for a few Archbishops and Cardinals too... Long story.


          2. re: Bill Hunt
            Porthos Nov 21, 2011 09:22 PM

            Yes. Just picked up some Epoisses, Comte, Roquefort, and St. Agur blue to go with this Colheita for dessert. Port and cheese is my newfound favorite pairing.

            Jason, if I don't know the Bishop, do I still have to pass the port? :)

        2. z
          zin1953 Aug 25, 2012 11:36 AM

          I hate to seem "boring and repetitive," but I opened another bottle of this wine last weekend following dinner, and it remains equally as good if not better than my TN above. Stunning wine and -- still -- a complete joy!

          1. Bill Hunt Sep 14, 2012 08:21 PM


            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.


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