Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Fonseca Vintage Port 2016 scores big -

2016 Fonseca Vintage Port...$106.99 / 750ml

The 2016 Vintage Port is a field blend sourced from the typical three quintas (Panascal in the Tavora Valley and Quinta do Cruzeiro and Quinta de St Antonio in the Pinhão Valley). When last seen, this was in fine form. It was aged for 20 months in wood and comes in with 99 grams of residual sugar. Right now, surprisingly, this seems more tightly wound than the Taylor's, which usually seems to me the burlier as between the two. It has beautiful fruit as well, if not quite the wave of big fruit that Taylor's shows off. In 2017, I would say Taylor's wins. In this vintage, it may be Fonseca. However, there are great performances all around.
Rated 97/100 The Wine Advocate
Lots of ripe fruit here with raisins and wet earth that turn to violets and hot stones. Full-bodied, tannic and powerful with fantastic grip and intensity. Grabs you. Impressive. Drink in 2025.
Rated 98/100 James Suckling
This bottling brings together a fine structure with great fruit to give a luscious wine that is also destined for long-term aging. With its ripe berry flavors sustained by some acidity, this is already balanced. Drink from 2028
Rated 97/100 Wine Enthusiast
The 2016 Fonseca Vintage Port began to be picked on 21 September at their Panascal vineyard, their Quinta do Cruzeira vineyard not picked until 6 October. It is deep, almost inky in colour. The bouquet is very intense with luscious black fruit laced with embers, clove and hints of bay leaf. There is wonderful purity here and a broodiness that suggests you'd better be patient. The palate is sweet and lively on the entry with some gorgeous ginger and curry leaf notes littered over the compact black fruit. There is wonderful density to this Fonseca. It is like a coiled spring with so much energy towards the finish that you just know this will be a long-term prospect. Superb. Production is 4,900 cases.
Rated 96/100 Neal Martin, Vinous Media

2017 Fonseca Vintage Port....$57.99 / 375ml
The 2017 Vintage Port, not quite bottled when originally seen, has now been in bottle for a couple of years. It is a field blend (with typical grapes like Touriga Nacional, Touriga Francesca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Roriz and Tinta Barroca) aged for approximately 20 months in used French oak. It comes in with 98 grams of residual sugar. This is a great Fonseca, distinctive, with a touch of eucalyptus and plums, but also loaded with delicious fruit. Like its Taylor's siblings, there is also a fine backbone. I'd say it is a step behind the Taylor's duo this year, but not by much. It will age well, to say the least.
Rated 98/100 The Wine Advocate
Rated 95/100 Vinous
Rated 95/100 James Suckling

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