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Feb 21, 2014 06:14 PM

Good vintage ports- how many are still out there?

I had a delivery today of '85 Dow ports from a NY merchant. When I lived in the city the 94's scored 100 by WS, but I'll expire before they are ready. I bought a couple cases of '85 and drank them all by 2002. I'll be interested to see how they have done with a little more time. (and a little more price)
I'm searching out '63's, for fun and pleasure and special company, and I can still find a few under $200, not many, they average $250 or more. I have never drank one, I gave one as a gift. A good port is probably the greatest pleasure that ever passed down my gullet. But I'm curious, how many 63's can possibly be undrunk by now? Zin, or anyone, any idea?

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  1. I drank my last 55 Graham in 99 and it was amazing. I believe the problem with going past 40 years is that you may have trouble with the seal and need to rebottle. (I stand ready to be chastised for that statement). If my amateur opinion is correct, it is time to finish off the 63s and the 68s.

    3 Replies
    1. re: kagemusha49

      Good point on the seal, although re-bottling is over my head. It's encouraging that you were amazed by a 44 Y.O. port, I have high hopes for my now 29 Y.O. '85's, and I'm willing to spend some to see how magical the now 51 Y.O. '63's are, in my lifetime! I gotst to know how good they can get! I think I have hit the pinnacles of aged sauternes, and I prefer ports.

      1. re: Veggo

        There are very few tipples that have astonished me although very many have pleased me. The Graham 55 I drank in 99 was one of the astonishers. If you're buying a 63 - I hope it has been well-kept

        1. re: kagemusha49

          There are still '63s available that have been properly stored, but you are quite right to raise that concern.

    2. How many '63s would you like to buy?

      (Look here -- --- and scroll down to the post from February 20, 2014.)

      3 Replies
      1. re: zin1953

        Thanks, Zin, but I'm not a FB participant. I'm thinking of 2 63's, and I recognize there must be a fair amount of trust as to where they have been for 51 years. I have a crystal decanter, but not with the wide flared base for candling but it will have to do.

        1. re: Veggo

          Can't speak for Florida, but most of the 1963s I was selling overwhelmingly came from one of two sources: a) the cellars of the producers themselves, or b) the cellars of merchants in the UK, where they were originally bottled in the first place.

          The latter was far more common than the former.

          1. re: zin1953

            Not many cellars in Florida. An interesting, protracted, and expensive civil suit involved the loss of millions in wine inventory at the Forge Restaurant in Miami Beach a couple decades ago, after a storm and lengthly power outage.
            If I can stumble on a couple 63's that have been comfortably ensconced as the ones you describe, I'll be a happy camper.