News archives 2002.

06/07/02. All articles older than 2 to 3 months are entered in News archives. We start with a title list with accompanying dates. You will find the full articles in order of publication if you scroll downwards.


30/11/02. New types and designations.
30/11/02. Website Quinta do Portal expanded.
30/11/02. Cálem and tourism.
30/11/02. Link of the month December 2002.
30/11/02. Revista de Vinhos no. 156 November 2002.
30/11/02. Harpers Port supplement.
02/11/02. Quinta de Vargellas.
02/11/02. Links page.
02/11/02. Cristiano van Zeller/José Maria da Fonseca.
02/11/02. Revista de Vinhos no. 155 October 2002.
12/10/02. Our journey and the White Port.
12/10/02. Portonic.
12/10/02. Quality control IVP.
12/10/02. Auction Glerum - Amsterdam.
12/10/02. Link of the month.
17/09/02. Next publications.
17/09/02. Poças News.
17/09/02. Revista de Vinhos no. 154 September 2002.
17/09/02. Graham's Dinner Party Guide.
07/09/02. Update "Files".
07/09/02. Link of the month September 2002.
07/09/02. Cristiano van Zeller.
07/09/02. Lower yields in 2002.
07/09/02. Bruce Guimaraens.
07/09/02. Vintage House Hotel - Pinhão.
07/09/02. Benefício 2002.
07/09/02. Revista de Vinhos no. 153 August 2002.
03/08/02. Summermonths.
03/08/02. First anniversary.
03/08/02. Links page.
03/08/02. Link of the month.
03/08/02. The first...
03/08/02. Supplement Vintages 2000.
03/08/02. Poças News.
03/08/02. International Wine and Spirit Competition.
03/08/02. Tasting Vintage Characters and article Quinta do Noval.
03/08/02. Concurso Cidade do Porto.
03/08/02. Revista de Vinhos no. 152 July 2002.
06/07/02. News Archives.
06/07/02. Vintages 2000.
06/07/02. Symington writing award.
06/07/02. New products.
06/07/02. Awards.
06/07/02. Export figures.
06/07/02. Tasting Colheitas.
06/07/02. Rozès and Vranken.
01/06/02. Tasting Vintages 2000.
01/06/02. Portuguese Wines Awards.
01/06/02. Burmester Sotto Voce.
26/05/02. French cruise on the Douro.
18/05/02. Port Wine in Lisbon.
04/05/02. No publication on 11-12/05/02.
04/05/02. 2 Concerns: 12 Vintages 2000.
28/04/02. Vintages 2000.
28/04/02. Awards.
20/04/02. Introduction to the new Port glass.
13/04/02. Europe protects Port types.
13/04/02. Port export decreases.
06/04/02. More tourism activities.
31/03/02. Tasting Vintage Characters.
31/03/02. Tasting Vintages 1999.
23/03/02. Vintages 2000.
23/03/02. Revista de Vinhos awards.
16/03/02. Crusted and LBV Unfiltered of Van Zeller.
16/03/02. Prowein - Düsseldorf March 24th-26th.
09/03/02. Poças News.
09/03/02. Tasting in Sintra, Portugal on March 13th-16th.
25/02/02. Cheese from the Serra da Estrela.
25/02/02. Tasting IVP/Hersh.
25/02/02. New name for Taylor Fonseca.
16/02/02. Harvest of 2001 too large?
04/02/02. Co-operative goes in real estate and tourism.
25/01/02. Sales in 2001.
25/01/02. Wine Magazine Febr. 02.
10/01/02. Tasting LBV's.
10/01/02. Port Wine in the USA.
10/01/02. Ramos Pinto 2.
06/01/02. Abílio Forrester Zamith: Port Wine Guide.
06/01/02. Ramos Pinto.

New types and designations.
30/11/02. On November 22nd a ministerial order (Portaria no. 1484/2002) has been published in Portugal about types and designations in the Port industry. This is the result of a long-term discussion within the Port organizations. The changes contain some new types, extensions of the requirements for some existing types, limitation of the number of permitted adjectives and a list of recognized colours.

  1. The only words allowed in addition to (young) Tawny, Ruby and Branco or White are Fino or Fine.
  2. The new type Reserva or Reserve is going to replace the Vintage Character. It is a good quality Ruby with variable cask maturing (not limited anymore to 4-6 years as for VC). The only allowed additions are Especial, Special and Finest.
  3. The types Reserva Tawny or Tawny Reserve ánd Reserva Branco or White Reserve are totally new. These have to been matured in casks for at least 7 years. Just like point 2 the only allowed additions are Especial, Special and Finest.
  4. The designations Velho or Old are only allowed for Tawnies of 10, 20 and 30 years old.
  5. The designations Muito velho or Very Old are reserved for Tawny more than 40 years old.
  6. Garrafeira has to lie down in casks for at least 7 years and has to further mature in large bottles for never less than 8 years before it is allowed to be marketed (see also: Files/Types 5c).
  7. It is not allowed to market unfiltered or traditionally bottled (see also: Files/Types 1d) Crusted and Late Bottled Vintage earlier than 3 years after bottling.
  8. The recognized colours are: 
    Retinto: red with purple for just bottled Vintage.
    - Tinto: red for young Port.
    - Tinto-alourado: red with yellow for young cask matured Port.
    - Alourado: reddish brown for Port after at least 10 years cask maturing.
    - Alourado-claro: clear brown for cask matured Port of 20-25 years old.
    - Branco-pálido: pale white for not yet oxidized white Port of white grapes with hardly any intensive colour extraction.
    - Branco-palha: straw white for medium oxidized white Port of white grapes with medium intensive colour extraction.
    - Branco-dourado: gold white for aged white Port of which the gold colour shows clearly chestnut brown tints. 

Usage of other designations will not be allowed after December 31st of 2002.
With this Portaria no. 1484/2002 the ministerial orders no. 612/98 and no. 174/99 are declared expired. We have not yet been able to find the texts of these 2. If necessary we will publish about them as soon as these texts are available to us.

Website Quinta do Portal expanded. 
30/11/02. www.quintadoportal.com has been expanded with a series of photographs of the winery, the cellars and the visitor’s centre.
Their 2000 Vintage is also presented and their Tawny 20 Years Old is highlighted.

Cálem and tourism.
30/11/02. This year Cálem hopes to be able to start the conversion of Quinta do Pego to a tourist accommodation. Q. do Pego is situated between the rivers Torto and Távora in Valan
Va do Douro/TabuaVo.
The project comprises 10 rooms, a restaurant and a bar, a tasting room, a typical wine warehouse and a swimming pool. The costs of the operation amount to 1 million Euros. It is due to open at the end of 2004.
Tourism is not new for Cálem. In 2001 the company received some 132,000 visitors in its lodges at a prominent spot on the quay in Vila Nova de Gaia. Recently a separate organisation  – Cálem Turismo – has been set up for all tourism activities.

Link of the month December 2002.
30/11/02. December is a very suitable time to drink an extraordinary Vintage Port. That’s why we have chosen www.thevintageportsite.com website of the month.
This specialized site of the Symington Family is unique. It is solely dedicated to the king of Ports: the Vintage (see also: Files/Types 5d). The design of the site is beautiful, the information is excellent and extensive and the texts well written. 
In addition to the general information the Vintage Chart is especially very extensive. It is a list of generally declared Vintages since 1900 with a rating out of 10, an indication of drinking status and a link to more details. Those details enclose: drinking status, tasting notes, climatic conditions, vinification and winemakers comments. Moreover extra information is given of every brand that has marketed a Vintage in that particular year (Dow’s, Graham’s, Warre’s, Smith Woodhouse, Gould Campbell, Quarles Harris, Quinta do Vesuvio and together with Joaõ van Zeller: Quinta do Roriz).
That these are only the own brands of the Symington Family is understandable and forgivable.
However, because of the large number of brands of this group the site is of almost general use.

Revista de Vinhos no. 156 November 2002.
30/11/02. The November issue of the Portuguese magazine Revista de Vinhos contains the following articles on Port Wine:

Tasting Vintages 2000:

The tasting panel has been able to judge 62 Vintages. Fifty-seven of these received 17 or more points on a score chart of 0-20, an absolute record in the tastings of R de V.
Quinta do Noval has been the very best with 20 points. Dalva, Po
Vas, Pousada, Q. do Noval and Taylor’s also score very high with 19 points.
At the bottom of the list we find Barros, Kopke, Q. do Portal and Real Companhia Velha with 16.5 points and Q. das Carvalhas, Q. Seara d’Ordens and Torga with 16 points.

Pousada 30 years:

Manuel D. Po
Vas Junior commemorates this year the 30th anniversary of its brand Pousada, the leading product of this house. On the occasion of this event PoVas is launching a Pousada Tawny 30 Years Old. Fernando Melo rates this newcomer with 18 points on a score chart of 0-20.
The articles are also to be found on www.revistadevinhos.iol.pt

Harpers Port supplement.  
30/11/02. The English magazine Harpers has dedicated its October supplement to Port Wine.
“Harpers supplements offer comprehensive overviews of  the major wine producing countries and most important wine and spirit categories … for enthusiasts, students and trade members.” 
This Port Wine supplement was sponsored by the Instituto do Vinho do Porto, Cálem, Cockburn’s, Dow’s, Fonseca, Graham’s, Royal Oporto, Taylor’s and Warre’s.
The supplement contains the following articles:

Christian Davis (editor): Plain Sailing, overview.

Davis sketches a stable, reasonable optimistic picture of the Port trade (and industry).

Peter Cobb: Rich Pickings, 2000 Vintage.

In spite of the 2000 hype Cobb writes: ”I can say with hand on heart that the wines are uniformly excellent.”
He also says: 
“However the trouble is that there is not a lot of wine available.”
“In the main, this means an approximate 10% increase over the starting price for the 1997’s.”

Richard Mayson : Top of the crops, grape varieties.

Mayson chiefly reviews the 5 most important Port grapes.

Richard Mayson: Best foot forward, technology.

Mayson’s article starts with: “Faced with a shortage of the labour for traditional extraction methods, a growing number of the Douro’s Port producers are turning to new and increasingly sophisticated production techniques.”
He also writes: “Whereas most winemakers have the luxury of a few days or even a couple of weeks to extract colour and flavour compounds from the skins, for Port producers it is a race against time. As little as 36 to 48 hours elapse before the must is run off, the fermentation arrested (and the colour diluted) by the addition of fortifying grape spirit.”
Mayson describes the traditional process, but also in chronological order the Autovinification, the ‘Movimosto’, the Vinimatics or rotovats, the Robotic treader and the Robotic lagar (Graham’s - Symington).

Neil Beckett: Altered images, tawny.

Beckett shows the rise of Aged Tawnies and Colheitas by means of the IVP/The Taylor Report sales numbers and he predicts a great future for these types.

Godfrey Spence: Going solo, Single Quinta.

Spence especially discusses the confusion that can be created by marketing more 2000 Vintages by large shippers. He tells: “Shippers releasing both full Vintages and a single Quinta wine from the same vintage are surely shooting themselves in the foot.”

Godfrey Spence: Raising spirits, grape spirit.

Spence describes the meaning of aguardente for the Port Wine production, all problems with Casa do Douro and since the free purchasing of and experimenting with other wine spirits with typical flavours.

David Williams: Turning the tables, on-trade.

Williams reports the activities to improve the image and sales of Port Wine. He says: “Maybe such simple measures as introducing half-bottles (Vintage), as much as educational leaflets, are the best weapon for knocking away the pipes and slippers, and bringing Port into the 21st century.”
The supplement can be ordered or downloaded soon for 9.99 English Pounds at:


Quinta de Vargellas.
02/11/02. The American magazine Wine & Spirits has made an inventory of its choice of the 25 greatest vineyards of the world in a special issue. Q. de Vargellas is the only Port producer on this list. This Q. is owned by The Fladgate Partnership (Taylor’s, Fonseca, Croft and Delaforce). In 1893 it was bought by Taylor’s. In 1958 the first Single Quinta Vintage of de Vargellas was made (see: Files/Types 1.f).
Some other top quintas are also reviewed in a separated section of the special issue.
More information can be found at www.wineandspiritsmagazine.com/issues/2002/september2002.html

Links page. 02/11/02.
  www.portugaloffer.com/pocas_vinhos/index.html  is not available anymore, so we have removed it. A proprietary website of PoVas is under construction.
The site of Quinta do Portal has been totally renewed.
The following sites are new on our page:
Quinta do Bucheiro,
Castelinho Vinhos (also Q. de São Domingos),
Quinta de Marrocos (also Q. do Vale de Sapos),
Cooperativa de Mêda,
        ,,        ,,  MurVa (also Caves da Porca),
Quinta Seara d’Ordens,
    ,,     de Ventozelo.

Cristiano van Zeller/José Maria da Fonseca.
02/11/02. The company producing table wines, José Maria da Fonseca (Península de Setúbal and Alentejo), has started a firm in the Douro region, for table wine as well as Port Wine, together with Cristiano van Zeller.
The new firm owns Quinta do Vale da Mina and Q. de Mós (together 15 hectares vineyards). A further 31 hectares have been leased.
The wines are produced at Q. do Vale Dona Maria, owned by Cristiano van Zeller.
The Domini and Domini Plus table wines will be marketed under the brand Domingo Soares Franco (1 of the 2 brothers/owners of J.M. da Fonseca) & Cristiano van Zeller, starting with the year 2000 bottles. The Domini Plus will only be made in the best years, just like Vintages Ports.
The Port Wine is marketed under the brand José Maria da Fonseca & van Zeller. A Vintage of the 2000 harvest has already been presented. Late Bottled Vintages will be made of every year, starting with 2000.

Revista de Vinhos no. 155 October 2002.
02/11/02. The October issue of the Portuguese magazine Revista de Vinhos contains the following information on Port Wine:

New products:

Judgement by the editorial staff. Score chart of 0-20.

the Casa Santa Eufémia Reserva Especial Branco (White) gets 17 points.
the Q. do Ventozelo Vintage 1999 gets 16.5 points.
the Q. Seara d’Ordens Doce Branco (White) gets 14.5 points.
Bruce Guimaraens 1:

Luís Lopez has written an extensive in memoriam about the winemaker and Vice Chairman of Taylor Fonseca who died August 22nd. Some quotes:
- “He respected the traditions and the empirical knowledge but was always open to renewals and improvements.”
- “Bruce was responsible for all the famous Vintages of Fonseca Guimaraens between 1960 and 1992.”

Bruce Guimareans 2:

His son David Guimaraens has written a personal homage in which he says, among other things:
“I have often been confronted with the question whether I live in my father’s shadow. My answer has been: ‘Yes, and with much proud.’” 

Readers choice:

The result of the annual readers poll of the best wines from all Portuguese regions is for Port Wine as follows (between brackets last year’s results): 1. Taylor’s (1); 2. Q. do Noval (3); 3. Niepoort (6); 4. Ferreira (2); 5. Fonseca (4); 6. Graham’s (-); 7. Cálem (7); 8. Burmester (8); 9. Sandeman (5); 10. Warre (10).
Barros disappeared from the top ten.

Quinta de Roriz:

Luís Ramos Lopes writes about the cooperation since 1999 of João van Zeller and the Symington Family in Q. de Roriz. The Vintage 2000 of this quinta gets 18.5 points by Lopes on a score of 0-20.
The articles are also to be found on www.revistadevinhos.iol.pt

Our journey and the White Port.
12/10/02. During this trip we have (re-)discovered the White Port. We did not really appreciate it until now.
During this visit delightful Whites surprised us. It seems that “secret” stocks have been stored everywhere. We were allowed to taste unlabeled private stocks, often of many decades old, in small restaurants and Quintas. They can truly compete with old Tawnies.
We also found very good Whites “aboveground”, and the recent promotion activities for “Portonic” (see below) bring the White Port to attention in a totally different way.
The weather during our stay had been good, we only had one rainy day. But the damage for the harvest had already been done. It rained enormously hard and much for days in the middle of September. Many grapes had ruptured. The white grapes had therefore been brought in first, as they are the weakest under these adverse circumstances.
Though there is already an wine overproduction word-wide, many new terraces are being constructed and new vines are being planted in the Douro region.
We have the impression that there are more independent small and medium-sized Quintas in the making with own wineries, brands and sales organizations. They often have a surprising price/quality ratio. Sometimes you think: this Port Wine should be qualified higher.
An example is a 10 years old that has all the characteristics of a 20 years old Tawny. Or a Standard Tawny that can effortlessly pass for a Reserva. This has to do with the approval costs of the Instituto do Vinho do Porto. These costs are relatively high for small producers with small lots and as a result they do not like to take the risk of having to pay for a re-examination.
Almost all Portuguese we have met were nice. Especially the families at small Quintas where we spend more time were friendly, charming and hospitable. Though we visited the region during the busy harvest period, fortunately the tourism was not totally annoying.
The properties, vineyards and orchards are all look well maintained. Unfortunately as soon as a piece of land does not seem to belong to anybody it is often used as dumping site for trash, debris and other construction waste, wrecks and so on. This is great pity and very shameful.
Soon we will totally revise our article Files/Round trip, but it will take some time to put the information we have collected in order.

12/10/02. Portonic is an aperitif with equal parts of  Dry White Port and tonic, with a slice of lemon or lime and an ice cube. The versions with Sweet White and Light Dry White should also be given a try. The Portonic is served in a high, narrow long drink glass.

Quality control IVP.
12/10/02. The guided tour Ms Louisa Maria Fry arranged for us in the headquarters of the Instituto do Vinho do Porto (IVP) in Oporto was nice and informative. The explanation given by Mr Manuel Lima Ferreira who joined us during our visit to the quality department (laboratories and tasting room) was extremely enlightening. Mr Ferreira is 1 of 2 youngsters of the 7 members who constitute the permanent tasting jury of the IVP. This jury tests some 20 lots almost daily of which 10 are new ones. The others are earlier judged samples. By testing these again, the consistency of the jury members is controlled permanently. Each lot of Port Wine, the Standards as well as the Special Categories, has to be approved by the jury and have to fall  within the norms determined for a certain type in all laboratory tests.

Auction Glerum – Amsterdam.
12/10/02. On Sunday October 20th from 16.00 hours, Glerum in Amsterdam will auction several wines with the following Port Wines amongst them (prices as indication):
No. 500: Andresen Colheita 1910, 1 bottle 60 Euros.
No. 501: Niepoort (Colheita?) 1927, edition of 360 bottles, bottled in 1978 on the opportunity of the birth of Niepoort’s son, 1 bottle 75 Euros.
No. 502: Kopke Colheita 1969, Barros Colheita 1976, Warre Tercenary Vintage 1970, Fonseca Bin 27, Taylor LBV 1976, Shepherd Vintage 1937 and an own brand of Wijn Verlinden Vintage 15 years old(?), 8 bottles 60 Euros.
No. 503: 2x Kopke Vintage 1977, Feist Vintage 1970, 3 bottles 90 Euros.
No. 504: Kopke Rich Ruby, Amandio Old Ruby 1955(?), Constatino Vintage 1927, 3 bottles 90 Euros.
Nr. 505: Constatino Vintage 1947, 2 bottles 75 Euros.
More information can be found at www.glerum.nl/home/index.htm under “catalogi online”.

Link of the month.
12/10/02. Link of the next 1.5 month is
www.chanceleiros.com of the unique tourist object Casa do Visconde de Chanceleiros near Pinhão. Casa do Visconde is working according to the formula of the Manor House Tourism. This means that a part of the magnificent main building is open  to guests also. 
The website of Casa do Visconde is surveyable and beautiful. In this case the many photographs are informative making the slower working acceptable. (See also Files/Round trip.)

Next publications.
17/09/02-07/09/02. We will travel around in the Port region from September 20th to October 4th.
That is why our next publications will be on: September 17th -18th, October 12th -13th and November 2nd -3rd.  

PoVas News. 17/09/02.
The PoVas LBV 1997 is awarded with a silver medal in the International Wine and Spirit Competition London 2002.
The bottles of the brand PoVas Quinta de Santa Barbara are changed in the “Standard Port Model”. The labels are renewed.
In June PoVas expected still to will have a normal harvest. Meanwhile they are afraid of a 30% lower yield by the unfavourable weather development (see also our News item of 07/09/02).

Revista de Vinhos no. 154 September 2002.
17/09/02. The September issue of the Portuguese magazine Revista de Vinhos contains the following articles on Port Wine:

New product:

Quinta do Castelinho LBV 1997 gets 17 points by the editorial staff on a score chart of 0-20.

Rota do Vinho do Porto:

The Rota is founded in 1996 and now it has 69 participants. The cultural programm of the months September and October for this area is also added to this article by Susana Máximo.

Quinta do Infantado:

Q. do Infantado has presented itself in the gastronomic ambiance of the restaurants Le Jardin des Sens in Paris and El Racó de Can Fabes near Barcelona together with the young company Bago de Touriga ( Douro table wines). The White Port gets 17.5 points, the LBV 1994 18.5 points, the Tawny 10 Years Old 15.5 points and the Vintage 1997 17 points in this article with text and photographs by João Afonso.

The articles are also to be found on www.revistadevinhos.iol.pt

Graham’s Dinner Party Guide.
17/09/02. Premium Port Wines, Inc. in San Fransisco, the sales organization in the USA of the Symington concern, has available a Graham’s Dinner Party Guide. The Symington concern covers Dow’s, Graham’s, Warre’s, Gould Campbell, Smith Woodhouse, Quarles Harris, Quinta do Vesuvio and Quinta de Roriz.
The guide is a glossy publication with 22 pages in the colours black, white and green. It is written around Graham’s Six Grapes Port (a Reserve or Vintage Character style; see: Files/Types 2 and 4d) and includes much information about organizing a home diner party.
It offers items about music, the host, the guest list, gifts, the kitchen, starters, dress code, grilling, table setting, table manners, a toast and “Portiquette”, the dessert, finishing up and game time. The guide also gives recipes for salad tropicale with a dressing, and a marinade and sauce for chicken.

Update “Files”.
07/09/02. Today we have published a number of smaller and larger changes and supplements to the articles in our “Files”. All changes are printed in italics. The most important are:
Part 1c. Cask maturing/storing and oxidation has been added to “Types”. This subject is also incorporated in the paragraphs 4 and 5. The parts 1k. Buyers Own Brands and 1l. Rubricating red Ports are new also. We made important supplements to the parts 3. White Port; 4d. Vintage Character; 5a. Late Bottled Vintage; 5b. Colheita and 5d. Vintage.
2. We have added a review on the book A Wine Lover’s Guide to Port by João Paulo Martins to “Library”.
3. The article “Round trip” is totally re-arranged and we have made some small changes.

Link of the month September 2002.
07/09/02. The link of the month is www.cigaraficionado.com/Cigar/Aficionado/wine.html#portugal  with a file of good articles on Port Wine, all by James Suckling. Cigaraficionado is the cigars website of the producers of Wine Spectator.
The site has a pleasant layout.
The file contains the following articles:
A passion for Port – The limited production of Vintage Port is keeping frenzied fanatics thirsting for more (Jan/Febr 2001).
2. The princess of Port – Great Vintages are available in stores and auction for affordable prices.
3. The 4 super stars – Vintage Port’s highest-rated wines come from Fonseca, Graham, Quinta do Noval and Taylor Fladgate and Yeatman Vinos S.A.
4. Monumental 1994 Vintage Port – An exclusive barrel tasting finds wines built for ages (15/06/1996).
5. Tasting Tawny Port – Challenging to make, wonderful to drink after the meals.
Not all articles are provided with a date. Some are partly out of date, but interesting.

Cristiano van Zeller.
07/09/02. Earlier we have reported the marketing of 2 interesting Port Wines by Cristiano van Zeller. These products are really available now. They are:

the De Zellaer Reserve Port (Crusted type). This name will change in Quinta do Vale Dona Maria Reserve Port beginning next bottling.
the Quinta Vale Mina LBV 1996/2001 Unfiltered.
For more information see our News item of 16/03/02.

Lower yields in 2002.
07/09/02. The IVV, the national institute for the Portuguese winegrowing and wine, foresees for this year on average a 11 to 19% lower yield compared to last year.
For the Douro region the expectations are even lower at 14 to 22%. Compared to the averages of the last 3 years the predictions are -7 to -16% respectively 0 to -9%.
The IVV expects that though the production levels will be lower, the wine quality will be higher because of higher rainfall.

Bruce Guimaraens.
07/09/02. The retired winemaker and Vice Chairman of Taylor Fonseca (now The Fladgate Partnership), Bruce Guimaraens, has died after a heart attack on August 22nd. He was 66.
Guimaraens started his career in the Port industry in 1956. He was mainly responsible for the wine making and the vineyard management.
An extensive in memoriam is to be found on http://just-drinks.com/harpers/news_detail.asp?art=17682 

Vintage House Hotel – Pinhão.
07/09/02. The group Douro Azul has bought the Vintage House Hotel in Pinhão for 7 million Euros from The Fladgate Partnership (Taylor’s, Fonseca, Croft and Delaforce).
Douro Azul is the largest cruise company on the Douro, offering mini yachts and helicopter flights and owns 4 restaurants, hotel Pousada Solar da Rede in Santa Cristina – Mesão Frio and Quinta do Solar da Rede also in Santa Cristina (Port Wine, table wine, olives and subtropical fruits).
The 4 star Vintage House Hotel has 43 rooms and 6 suites and was opened by Taylor’s in 1998 on the site of its former lodges.
The hotel started a Wine Academy (courses, tastings, wine club and shop) on February 27th.

Benefício 2002.
07/09/02. The production quotum for Port Wine in 2002 (benefício) has been determined by the CIRDD on 135,000 pipas of 550 litres most (before adding aguardente). This is 15,000 pipas less than in 2001. The reason is that 20,000 pipas of Port Wine of last year’s harvest have not yet been sold by the small producers.

Revista de Vinhos no. 153 August 2002.
07/09/02. The August issue of the Portuguese magazine Revista de Vinhos contains the following information on Port Wine:

Symington Vintages:

Luís Lopez reports a tasting of 2000 Vintages of some brands of the Symington Family. On a score chart of 0-20 Smith Woodhouse gets 18 points; Warre’s 18.5; Dow’s 19; Graham’s and Quinta do Vesuvio both 19.5 points.

Temperature of wine:

João Afonso writes about the right serving temperature of wines. For Vintage he recommends 15-18 degrees Celsius, for Aged Tawny 13-16 degrees.

Rabelo restaurant:

Alfredo Hervias y Mendizabel reviews the Rabelo restaurant of the Vintage House Hotel in Pinhão in an extensive article. He calls it “each time more consistent and more attractive”. Specially he praises the good handling of the wines, with at least 5 different Riedel glasses.

The articles are also to be found on www.revistadevinhos.iol.pt

Summer months.
03/08/02 - 06/07/02 - 01/06/02. Until now we have published news supplements almost every weekend. During the coming summer months we will only do so in the first weekend of the month. This gives us the possibility of working on new articles and adaptations of the site. However, we will publish in between, if there is very special news.  

First anniversary.
03/08/02. Just a year ago we started our site. Of course we have celebrated it with a good glass of Port Wine.
We want to thank all our visitors for their interest and many people within and without the Port industry for their response, help and information.
We will continue trying to improve the content of this site.

Links page.
03/08/02. Today we have started a page with links to interesting websites. The page is divided in 2 sections: 1. Port Wine Links and 2. General Wine Links.
The site addresses are in alphabetical order on key words. For example: Quinta do Portal can be found under Portal, The Vintage Port Site can be found under Vintage.
We would appreciate it if you would inform us about links that do not work and about websites you think we should add too.

Link of the month.
03/08/02. Today we have also started with “link of the month”. You can find it just below the head text of our News page. It will be renewed every first weekend of the month.

At the same time we will publish a review of the highlighted site on this page.

The first…
03/08/02. Our first choice as link of the month is www.quintadoestanho.com 
Q. do Estanho is owned by the Acácio Queiroz Cardoso family. Q. dos Corvos also belong to the company. Its yearly production is 105,000 litres of Port Wine and 120,000 litres of table wine on average.
The site of Q. do Estanho is a perfect example of a good website, friendly designed, without unnecessary graphical effects, irritating backgrounds and interfering colours. It is the proof that one does not need to be large to make a good thing.
As general information the site only gives a short presentation and history of the company. Next to this, much good and detailed information about its own products is given. The design packings in particular are striking again.
The site has English, German, Portuguese, French and Dutch versions. And they all work, which is worth a compliment. For many other sites that is not so.
As we have to state more, often the Portuguese version is more extensive than the other versions.
The only real criticism we have is that it is difficult to switch from one version to the other. But apart from that we are very enthusiastic about this site.

Supplement Vintages 2000.  
03/08/02. To the article by Roy Hersh on www.wineloverspage.com/port/2000forecast.phtml 6 more wines are added.
The second best must be the Fonseca with 97-99 points and not the Graham with 95-97 points as we wrote mistakenly before.

PoVas News. 03/08/02.
In view of the weather conditions from last winter up to now, the PoVas agriculturists forecast that they will have a normal harvest.
The Vintage 1995 is out of stock. The stock of the Vintage 1996 is ample. The Vintage 1977 will be out of stock in short time. The enthusiastically forecasted Vintage 2000 will be on the market soon.
The LBV 1996 is practically sold out. Succession is secured with the LBV 1997.
PoVas got many awards again for its products in the past period.
All PoVas Services will be closed during summer holidays from July 19th till August 19th.

International Wine and Spirit Competition.
03/08/02. In 1969 the wine chemist Anton Massel launched Club Oenologique. In 1978 its name changed into International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC). Harpers Trade Journals acquired the Competition in 1999.
“Judging takes place at the Competition’s office in rural Surrey. The remote location and tranquillity of the Competition Headquarters encourage judges to leave their commercial interest behind and focus solely on the job at hand.
The Competition is the only wine and spirit competition in the world that submits entries to a two-step judging process, of professional blind tasting and extensive chemical analysis.”
The 2002 President has been Dominique Heriard Dubreuil the chief executive officer of Remy-Cointreau, France.
In each testing category awards are made on the Olympic principle: one Gold, one Silver and one Bronze medal. Some products may receive a Commendation certificate.
This year Gold medals went to Dow’s Crusted; Warre’s LBV 1992 Traditional; Graham’s 20 Years Old Tawny; the Colheita’s: Kopke 1967, Andresen 1980 and Burmester 1991 and Vintages: Rozès 1995, Dow’s Quinta do Bomfim 1995, Dow’s Quinta Senhora da Ribeira 1998 and Quinta do Castelinho 1999.
The total results can be found on www.iwsc.net where you have to click successively: 2002 Awards/Fortified Wines/Type: Port and Go.

Tasting Vintage Characters and article Quinta do Noval.
03/08/02. Portuguese Wines no. 22 of June 2002 (the bi-monthly summary of Revista de Vinhos) reports a tasting of 32 Vintage Characters. Earlier this article was published in Revista de Vinhos no. 148 of March 2002 (see our News item of 31/03/02).
So, now the story is also available in English.
The same issue of PW contains an article on Quinta do Noval which also includes some tasting notes.

Concurso Cidade do Porto.
03/08/02. All awarded medals of the third Concurso Internacional de Vinhos “Cidade do Porto” are to be found on www.can.pt/concurso/premiados_e.html 
Three of the 4 gold medals went to Port Wine: Dalva Reserve, Kopke Colheita 1952 and Romariz Colheita 1934.

Revista de Vinhos no. 152 July 2002. 
03/08/02. The July issue of the Portuguese magazine Revista de Vinhos contains the following articles on Port Wine:

New products:

Judgement by the editorial staff. Score chart of 0-20.

the Convento Velho Tawny 20 Years Old (C. da Silva) gets 16 points.
the PoVas LBV 1997/2002 gets 17 points.
the Quinta de Vale de Cavelas (PoVas) Vintage Character 16 points.
Quinta do Convento:

Quinta do Convento de São Pedro das Águias belongs to the Vranken Monopole concern. The article with text and photographs by Luís Ramos Lopes gives good information and 10 tasting notes.

Interview James Suckling:

Susana Máximo interviewed James Suckling, well-known wine writer and editor of the American magazine Wine Spectator.
With regard to the Vintages 2000 he says not to be sure yet that they are better than the Vintages of the peak year 1994.
About the preference of Americans to drink Vintages young, he says that it has to do with impatience to wait for a very good wine for 15-20 years, with preference for fruity wines and with the fact that less Americans have good storing possibilities.
Suckling enlarges enthusiastically about the combination of Port and cigars. He thinks to have been at the basis of the growing interest in this combination together with Marvin Shanken (owner of Wine Spectator and the website Cigar Aficionado).

Tourism at Quinta da Casa Amarela:

In an article with text and photographs by Fernando Melo extensive tourist information is given about Casa Amarela and the related Quinta do Pinheiro.
Very special is a “Jogo do Vinho” (a wine play) that takes one afternoon for groups of 20-24 persons.

For people who can read Portugese these articles are to be found on www.revistadevinhos.iol.pt   

News Archives.
06/07/02. Our News section gradually became very filled. That’s why we started  News Archives today.
All articles, older than 2 to 3 months, will be entered in there. Archives start with a title list with accompanying dates. If you scroll downwards you will find the full articles in order of publication.

Vintages 2000.
06/07/02-16/07/02. On www.wineloverspage.com/port/2000forecast.phtml Roy Hersh gives extensive tasting notes of 24 Vintages 2000. He designates the Fonseca as second best with 97-99 points. His personal favourite is Niepoort with 98-100 points.

Bar do Binho, with shops in Sintra and the Carlton Palace Hotel in Lisbon, puts up for sale several Vintages 2000 “en primeur”. The prices are:
Burmester, Croft, Secundum (Niepoort’s), Silval (Q. do Noval) and Smith Woodhouse 37.50 Euros,
Warre’s 40 Euros,
Dow’s 45 Euros,
Niepoort’s and Q. dos Canais (Cockburn’s) 47.50 Euros,
Graham’s and Q. do Vesuvio 50 Euros,
Q. do Noval 60 Euros,
Fonseca 75 Euros,
Taylor’s 85 Euros.
The prices for Magnums (1.5 litres) are:

Dow’s 85 Euros,
Graham’s, Niepoort’s and Q. do Vesuvio 100 Euros,
Fonseca 140 Euros,
Taylor’s 180 Euros.

Symington writing award.
06/07/02. The Symington family has created an annual award to recognise excellence in reporting on or writing about any aspect of the Port trade whether in book, newspaper or magazine format. All subjects related to Port will be considered. The aim is to encourage journalists and authors to take more interest in the Port Wine trade and thereby enhance the consumer’s knowledge and appreciation of Port generally.
The regulations for the award require publication in print in the British market.
A prize of 2.500 British pounds plus a case of Vintage Port will be awarded annually.
The first prize will be awarded for an article or book published in 2002.
The panel of judges is composed as follows:

Jancis Robertson MW,
Allan Cheesman,
Marcia Waters MW,
Steve Daniel,
Sebastian Payne MW.
Robin Walters MW, Chairman of Fell’s and Paul Symington will also be on the panel.

New products.
06/07/02. The editorial staff of the Portuguese magazine Revista de Vinhos no.151 of June 2002 has judged 2 new Port Wine products:

the Rol Roi a Reserva or Vintage Character of Roseira and Ricou. On the label this Port Wine is indicated as Meio Seco - half dry. It gets 17.5 points on a chart of 0-20.
The LBV 1997 of Burmester also scores 17.5 points.

06/07/02. During the third “Concourso Internacional de Vinhos Cidade do Porto” from June 10th to 15th many medals were awarded to Port Wines.
Grand Gold Medals went to Dalva Porto Reserve 1940, Kopke Colheita 1952 and Romariz Colheita 1934.
Many Golden and Silver Medals were also awarded. The complete result can be found on : www.can.pt/concurso/premiados.html

Export figures.
06/07/02. The export of Port Wine amounted to 121.8 million Euros. This is an increase of 0.4% compared to the same period last year.
The figures for the most important countries are:

France:  + 34.8% to 42.4 million Euros,
The Netherlands: + 14.6% to 17.8 million Euros,
Belgium: + 10.3% to 12.5 million Euros,
The USA: + 8.9% to 10.9 million Euros.

Tasting Colheitas.
06/07/02. The Portuguese magazine Revista de Vinhos no. 151 of June 2002 reports a tasting of 22 Colheitas from the sixties and seventies. Above all this type is appreciated in the Portuguese home market.
On a score chart of 0-20 the Burmester 1963, Wiese and Krohn 1961 and Q. do Noval share first place with a score of 18 points.
At the bottom of the list we find Cálem Reserve 1961 with 15 points, Romariz 1963 with 14.5 points and Dow’s 1972 with 14 points.   

Rozès and Vranken.
06/07/02. The French multinational Vranken Monopole (Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy-LVMH champagnes) merged its Port houses Rozès and S. Pedro das Águias to SPR Vinhos.
Even before the merger the group realised the acquisition of Quinta da Canameira (class A) in Barca d’Alva (Douro Superior). Together with Q. da Veiga Redonda, Q. do Monsul and 6 other properties the company produces 40% of the necessary grapes itself.

Tasting Vintages 2000.
01/06/02. On www.winespectator.com/Wine/Home the following article in “Wine Spectator Weekly” of May 30th is announced: “In an exclusive tasting, senior editor James Suckling rates the 2000 Port vintage at potentially classic quality. Thirty Ports are reviewed.” 

Portuguese Wines Awards.
01/06/02. In Portuguese Wines no. 21 of April 2002 (the bi-monthly summary of Revista de Vinhos) the editorial staff gives its choice of the “Best of the Year” for the fifth time. Earlier this survey was published in Revista de Vinhos nr. 147 of February 2002 (see News item of 23/03/02).
So, now the story is also available in English.

Burmester Sotto Voce.
01/06/02 - 06/07/02. In the Portuguese magazine Revista de Vinhos no. 150 of May 2002 is judged the Burmester Sotto Voce. It is a Vintage Character (see Files/Types 4d) which is rated with 16.5 points on a score chart of 0-20. 
Sotto Voce is an Italian singing term and means: with a soft voice.

New products.  
26/05/02-07/09/02. The editorial staff of the Portuguese magazine Revista de Vinhos no. 149 of April 2002 has tasted some new Port Wine products:

the Tawny 40 Years Old of Quinta do Estanho (see our News item of 14/10/01) gets 17 points on a chart of 0-20. This wine has somewhat the roasted taste of wines matured in the Douro region, but this does not dominate its qualities (see: Files/Types 1e).
the G Porto line of Gilberts (see our News item of 01/12/01). The Extra Dry White gets 13.5 points, the Ruby 15, the Tawny 15.5, the Tawny 10 Years Old 16, the LVB 1997 gets 17 points and the Vintage 1999 scores 16.5 points.

French cruise on the Douro.  
26/05/02. The French shipping company of the Schmitter family from Strasbourg runs cruises on the Douro with modern hotel boats from April 17th. The company will soon be running 20 boats on the Rhône, the Seine, the Rhine, the Po, the Danube, the Elbe and the Douro. Some are used for cross-border trips.
The motor ship Vasco de Gama has started cruising the Douro. In 2003 she will be joined by the motor ship Príncipe do Douro (Prince of the Douro). Both boats have a capacity of 144 passengers. The crew of 28 heads a ship will be fully Portuguese.
The trip takes 7 days. Departure and arrival will be in Oporto. The ship will call at Bitetos, Peso de Régua, Barca D’Alva, Vega de Teron and Pinhâo. Several excursions are included in the trip.
The cost is about 750 Euros a head. Of course there are also possibilities of group reservations and arrangements.

Port Wine in Lisbon.
18/05/02-26/05/02. Part of the trip to Lisbon with our Portuguese class we spent on Port Wine. The most important places we visited were:

Manuel Tavares, Lda in the Rua da Betesga 1A and 1B in the Chiado district nearby the Rossio.
Coisas do Arco do Vinho in the Rua Bartolomeu Dias – Lojas no. 7 and 8 in the gallery of the Centro Cultural in the Belém district.
Bar do Binho 1 op het PraVa da República 2 in Sintra (some 45 minutes by train westwards). Since some time there is also a Bar do Binho 2 in the Carlton Palace Hotel in the Rua Jau 54 in the Santo Amaro district west of Lisbon.
Loja do Vinho in Sintra, 2 houses to the right of Bar do Binho 1.
Solar do Vinho do Porto of the Instituto do Vinho do Porto (IVP) in the Rua de S. Pedro de Alcântara 45 to the west of the Rossio in the Bairro Alto district.
Of course all shops at the airport. One is right before customs, the others behind it including the proprietary shop of the IVP.

Above all we were looking for some specialties of we have written during the last months but which we were unable to buy in our neighbourhood. Happily, the magnificent designed new bottle of G-Porto of Gilberts is now actually standing before us on our desk (see our news item of 01/12/01). We also succeeded in buying the Ruby Meio-Seco of Quinta do Infantado, although some shopkeepers alleged that it does not exist (see our news item of 04/08/01). We spent a lot of  time looking for the much-praised and laureate Warre’s LBV 1992 of the bottle year 1998, but in vain. Finally we bought one bottled in 1996. Meanwhile we have heard that this LBV is all bottled in 1996. The bottling years 1997 and 1998 do not exist for this LBV 1992 at all.
Unfortunately we could not get hold of the 2 Van Zeller products from our news item of 16/03/02.
In the Solar of the IVP we managed to buy some of the new Vieira glasses (see our news item of 20/04/02). The glasses used in the Solar do have a beautiful engraving of the number part of the IVP guarantee seal (see Files/What’s Port?) under which the full name of the institute is reproduced. However we could not buy such a glass for our collection, no matter how hard we tried. Amazing. If you can sell something like this, wouldn’t it be business and promotion together?  

No publication on 11-12/05/02.
04/05/02. From May 8th to 14th we are going to Lisbon with our Portuguese class. That’s why we will not publish new items on May 11th or 12th
Though it is not a Port Wine trip we will certainly take advantage to nose around in wine- and book shops. We have an extensive wish list. If something special occurs we will surely report it.

2 concerns: 12 Vintages 2000.
04/05/02. The Fladgate Partnership has declared Vintages 2000 of its houses Taylor’s, Fonseca, Croft and Delaforce.
Chairman Alistair Robertson, who has spent 33 harvests at Quinta de Vargellas comments: “The ripening conditions at Vargellas were among the best I can remember. Yields were on the low side but the grapes were in very good condition, firm and thick skinned, producing a huge amount of colour. Interestingly, analytical records show that the young wines had the deepest colour readings of the last 30 years. The 20th century produced some magnificent Vintage Ports and I am delighted that it has been crowned by a 2000 Vintage of this quality.”

The Symington Concern has declared the following 8 Vintages 2000 (comments by Peter Symington).
Dow’s: “A little drier than the other leading houses.”
Graham’s: “Amazingly concentrated.”
Warre’s: “In my opinion, one of the real stars.”
Gould Campbell: “Tight and concentrated, altogether a very serious wine. Its only a pity the quality is so small.”
Smith Woodhouse: “The colour is immense and the tannins are strong.”
Quarles Harris: “Fantastic structure and colour.”
Quinta do Vesuvio: “Only 2500 cases of 12. One of Vesuvio’s finest wines, yet.”
Quinta de Roriz: “Only 2000 cases, which all will be released En Primeur.”
Peter Symington: “It has been many years since so many of the quality indicators have been present in any one year. Namely the excellent fruit quality; high sugar readings; ideal weather throughout picking; very low yields; purple colours already apparent from the beginning of fermentation; wonderful aromas from the musts and the low juice to skin ratio. Fermentations took place under near ideal conditions, no cooling being required, in fact a little heating was needed due to quite cool nights. The ideal fermentation temperatures produced wonderfully aromatic musts.”    

Vintages 2000.

28/04/02. Almost all large Port houses have declared Vintages 2000 (see: Files/Types 5d).That year’s harvests have generally been about one third smaller than previous years, but quality has been promising from the start. The winemakers’ first statements are also positive about the Vintages 2000.
Some influence can certainly be attributed to the attractiveness of the year 2000 for marketing. 
The complete list of Vintages 2000 will be available in September 2002, as declarations can be made until that month.

28/04/02. During the ninth “Concours Mondial du Vin de Bruxelles 2002” many many medals were awarded to Port Wines.
There was only one Grand Gold Medal for the Andresen LBV 1997.
There were also 13 Golden and 21 Silver Medals. It is notable that these prices not only went to the top types Vintage, Colheita and Aged Tawny, but also many to Vintage Character and LBV.
The complete result can be found on http://www.concoursmondial.be/2002/pt.htm  

Introduction to the new Port glass.

20/04/02-18/05-03/08/02. Thanks to a kind lady of the IVP at the ProWein in Düsseldorf we have finally laid hands on the new Port glass.
In the Portuguese press it is especially seen as the successor to the spherical, five centiliter liqueur glass. However, we want to compare it to the ten centiliter ISO Port glass (ISO = International Standard Organization), which has also been around for a long time. That glass for example was used by nearly all Port Wine exhibitors at the last ProWein. This is also the glass we have used ourselves for the last few years.
The new glass has been designed by the internationally renown Portuguese architect Álvaro Siza Vieira, by order of the IVP and AEVP (IVP = Instituto do Vinho do Porto; AEVP = Associa
Vão das Empresas de Vinho do Porto - particularly the large shippers). Vieira has already designed utensils before. The design process has been guided by a large group of wine connoisseurs and marketing people from the most important Port houses.



Left the ISO glass and right the Vieira glass.

The goblet of both glasses, their most important feature, is nearly identical.
There are however many, many differences between the two glasses.
The thickness of the glass of the new goblet is considerably finer, which makes drinking much more pleasant.
With foot and stem together, 168 mm. high, the Vieira glass is 13 mm. taller than the old glass. The stem of the ISO glass is a circle of 9 mm., the one of the new glass is a square of 6.5 mm. The foot of the ISO glass is a circle of 62 mm., the one of the Vieira glass is a circle of 71 mm.
Two aspects of stem and foot of the new glass are very special:
The corner lines of the square stem continue across the top of the foot. Moreover the foot continues a little against the stem, which gives a prismatic effect together with the continuing corner lines.
2. At one of the corners of the stem, a little under the goblet, one smooth indentation has been made to hold the glass (one and not two indentations as we, being wrongly informed, wrote before). It is remarkable to see that my wife uses this indentation for her thumb, as it is meant to be, whereas I prefer to put my forefinger in it.
All together it is an extraordinary glass. It is even a glass you can have a good conversation about. It  is beautiful and elegant, it is nice to hold and it drinks deliciously.
The market introduction is still going very slowly. On September 10th  2001 the glass was presented in the Museu de Lamego. Just before that year’s Christmas it was distributed among the public and catering industry during “glass-breaking-ceremonies” in Peso da Régua and Oporto (see also our News item of 15/12/01). But at the ProWein of March 24th - 26th  none of the exhibitors seemed to have it. Only in the IVP stand the glass could be admired. Also our own (good) wine shop here in The Netherlands is not able to deliver it yet. Maybe it has something to do with the great indignation in Portugal when it turned out that the order for the production was given to a non Portuguese company.
We currently know of only one possibility to buy the glass, namely through the specialized Port Wine web shop www.lojaviva.pt/cgi-bin/OportoWines.storefront  There you can find the glass under “Accessories”, but it can also been clicked on directly from their homepage. 
We hope that this glass will be accepted quickly and publicly and that all much too small Port glasses will be destroyed. These glasses, some even with mini-goblets, spoil the drinking pleasure, especially in the catering industry. Better a small quantity in a proper glass than a thimble filled to the brim. 

Europe protects Port types.
13/04/02. Recently the European Commission approved the protection of the following names of Port Wine types: Vintage, Late Bottled Vintage or LVB, Vintage Character, Ruby and Tawny.
So, no other fortified wines, from the EU or imported in the EU, can use these indications from now.

Port export decreases. 
13/04/02. The export of Port Wine in February decreased by 2.2% to 45.21 million Euros compared to February 2001.
However, in France (largest importer with a market share of 36.2%) sales still increased by 5.5% to 16.37 million Euros. But there were major decreases in the following 3 countries on the export list:

The Netherlands, market share 14.5%, -18% to 6.54 million Euros,
The USA, market share 9.7%, -7.2% to 4.38 million Euros,
Belgium, market share 7.8%, -36.3% to 3.53 million Euros.
Prices however, are rallying. After the exceptionally low level before it rose in January by 25.9% and in February by 16.1% to, on average,  4.61 Euros a litre.
The proportion between brands of producers/shippers and own brands of retailers was 9.41 : 1.89 million Euros.

More tourism activities.
06/04/02. The organization behind the “Rota do Vinho do Porto” (see: Files/Round trip) is going to complete offices and a promotion centre in a building next to the railway station in Peso da Régua. The installation has to be realized before the tourism peak season of next summer.
The centre will present information about all, over 50, connected members of the Rota. Port Wine and other products of the Quintas and co-operatives from the region will also be sold.

The Port museum that is also planned in Peso da Régua will take more time to be completed. Some even say as late as 2004. It is true that a management foundation has been established and the government has promised money, but the actual building has not yet been purchased.
In Porto a subsection to this museum should already be opened in March. Only the caves in Vila Nova de Gaia and the places of interest in the Port area will be exposed. The subsection is situated at the riverfront near the customs house.

Tasting Vintage Characters.
31/03/02. The Portuguese magazine Revista de Vinhos no. 148 of March 2002 reports a tasting of 32 Vintage Characters (VC). The name of this type is already up for debate long time (see: Files/Types 2). In fact it is no more than a better or Super Ruby (see: Files/Types 4d).
The tasting encloses “real” VC’s as well as own names like Graham’s Six Grapes and Fonseca’s BIN 27.
On a score chart of 0-20, Cruz Fine VC, C. da Silva’s Dalva VC and Rozès VC share first place with a score of 17 points.
At the bottom of the list we find Casal dos Jordões VC, Vistalegre VC and Krohn Rio Torto VC with 15 and Duas Santas VC with 14 points.
Dalva was also ended at the first place in the previous VC tasting of RdeV. Barros and Niepoort have it selves maintained at the second place compared to that tasting.

Tasting Vintages 1999.
31/03/02. In Portuguese Wines no. 20 of February 2002 is reproduced the report of a tasting of 22 Vintages 1999 as before published in Revista de Vinhos no. 144 of November 2001 (see: News item of 22/12/01).
So, now the story is also available in English.

Vintages 2000.
23/03/02 - 13/04/02. Wine Spectator Online published an article titled “Top Names In Port Declare 2000 Vintage” by James Suckling. He quotes Peter Symington (Dow, Graham, Warre, Quarles Harris, Gould Campbell, Smith Woodhouse and Quinta do Vesúvio). This veteran Port blender is “unusually enthusiastic” and he thinks the Vintages 2000 might be better than the Vintages 1994.
The concern will declare Vintages from all its houses and from some of its quintas. 
The article can be found under www.winespectator.com/Wine/Daily/News/1,1145,1639,00.html 

Revista de Vinhos awards.
23/03/02. In the Portuguese wine magazine Revista de Vinhos no. 147 of February 2002 the editors publish its choice of the “Best of the Year” for the fifth time. The following awards were given to the Port industry:
Co-operative of the Year became Adega Cooperativa de Santa Marta de Penaguião, among other things because of the marketing of its Vintage 1998 - the first ever declared by a co-operative (see news item of 07/10/01).
Company of the Year (fortified wines) became the group Taylor Fonseca.
Winemaker of the Year for fortified wines became Luís Soares Duarte working for Quinta do Infantado and Q. Seara d’Ordens.

Mister Wine of the Year became Fernando Guedes of Sogrape, the company that made famous the Mateus Rosé. The Port companies Ferreira, Forrester/Offley and Sandeman belong to this group (see news item of 30/12/01).
Awards of Excellence were given to Warre’s LBV 1992/?, Cockburn’s Tawny 20 Years Old, Ramos Pinto Tawny 30 years Old and Fonseca Guimaraens Vintage 1998.
Best from the Port Region awards went to Fonseca LBV 1995/2000, Q. do Infantado LBV 1996/2000, Noval LBV Unfiltered 1996/2001, Ferreira Q. do Porto Tawny 10 Years Old, Ramos Pinto Q. da Ervamoira Tawny 10 Years Old, Delaforce Tawny 10 Years Old, Graham’s Tawny 20 Years Old, Q. do Castelinho Tawny 20 Years Old, Real Companhia Velha Tawny 20 Years Old, Sandeman Tawny 20 Years Old, Burmester Tordiz Tawny Over 40 Years Old, Niepoort Colheita 1988/2001, Po
Vas Q. de Santa Bárbara Colheita 1989/?, Taylor’s Q. de Vargellas Vintage 1987, Fonseca Guimaraens Q. do Panascal Vintage 1996 and Taylor’s Q. de Vargellas Vintage 1998.
Best Buys awards were given to Q. do Infantado Ruby, Seara D’ordens Vintage Character, Graham’s LBV 1995/? and Q. do Noval LBV Unfiltered 1996/?.

Crusted and LBV Unfiltered of Van Zeller.
16/03/02-07/09/02. Cristiano van Zeller is marketing 2 interesting Port Wines:

Quinta do Vale da Mina LBV Unfiltered 1996 and
-  De Zellaer Reserve Port (Crusted type).

The name Van Zeller is well known in the Port Wine industry. Originally from the Netherlands, the family traveled through France to Portugal around 1700. In 1813 Van Zeller´s 4th great grandfather, António José da Silva, founded a Port company. In 1896 the legendary Quinta do Noval was bought. Later on the company name was changed to Quinta do Noval - Vinhos, SA. After a long-running family dispute and a disastrous fire at the lodges in Vila Nova de Gaia, the company was sold to AXA Millesimes in 1993.
Cristiano van Zeller has been working in the Port industry since 1982. At first in the family company and since 1995 as an independent producer of Single Quinta Ports, which is more than just Single Quinta Vintages (see also: Files/Types 1f).

Van Zeller owns 2 quintas: Q. do Vale da Mina in the Douro Superior and Q. do  Vale Dona Maria in the Cima Corgo (see: Files/What´s Port?).

The 1995 until 1998 production was prepared in cooperation with Dirk van Niepoort (also from Dutch descent).

The Q. do Vale da Mina LBV Unfiltered 1996 is the first lot largely derived from this Quinta and uses its full name. Before, there was a Vale da Mina LBV Unfiltered 1995. Since the Quinta was bought in that year, grapes of similar quality were used from surrounding vineyards. Furthermore the indication Quinta had been left out. The above-mentioned LBV 1995 is now ready for consumption or can be stored until about 2006/7.
For the De Zellaer Reserve Port (Crusted type) the family name was written as used in the past. Of course it is unfiltered (see: Files/Types 1d and 4c). Its grapes were foot trodden in granite stone “lagares”. This Reserve is bottled only once every year. The date is shown on the label. At the “Instituto do Vinho do Porto” it is registered as Crusted Port. Every year around three-quarters of the total production will be marketed as Reserve. The rest will be stored for a minimum of 3 years to than be sold as Crusted Port. This Reserve is now ready for consumption or can be stored until about 2005.

Prowein – Düsseldorf March 24th-26th.
16/03/02. On March 24th, 25th and 26th the annual wine fair Prowein will be held in Düsseldorf - Germany. It is not easy to get a good survey of Port Wine companies and -organizations from the inconveniently arranged catalogue. Certainly will be present:

Instituto do Vinho do Porto
Barros, Almeida
Croft  (Taylor Fonseca)
Delaforce (Taylor Fonseca)
W. & J. Graham
Port 6 (Barão de Vilar, Kopke, J. H. Andresen, PoVas, Quinta do Portal and Wiese & Krohn)
Quinta de Ventozelo
Sandeman (Sogrape)
Silva & Cosens (Dow)
Sogrape (Ferreira, Forrester/Offley).

PoVas News.
09/03/02 - 30/03/02. Manoel D. Po
Vas Junior - Vinhos, SA commemorates this year the thirtieth anniversary of its leading brand “Pousada” and the fiftieth anniversary of its cooperation with the Belgian sales group Bloc.
The LBV 1995, the Vintages 1990 and 1994 and the Quinta de Santa Bárbara Colheita 1990 are out of stock.
Vas will be present at Prowein - Düsseldorf - 24/26 March.

Tasting in Sintra, Portugal on March 13th-16th.
09/03/02 - 10/03/ - 30/03/02. After last year’s success wine house Bar do Binho again presents a spectacular tasting named Porto Extravaganza in the Palácio Valen
Vas in Sintra.
On March 13th there is a tasting of Croft and Delaforce Vintages from 1963-2000 entitled “Two Brands, Two Worlds” with comments by David Guimaraens and Dick Delaforce.

On March 14th there will be “Memories of a Century” with Cockburn’s and Martinez Vintages from 1912-2000 with comments by Jim Reader and Miguel Côrte-Real. There will be tasted: Cockburn’s Vintages 1912, 27, 35, 47, 55, 63, 70, 1983 and 2000; Quinta dos Canais Vintages 1995 and 99; Martinez Vintages 1945, 55, 70, 85 and 99 and Quinta da Eira Velha Vintage 1994.
On March 15th there will be a tasting of Adriano Ramos-Pinto Vintages from 1880-2000 entitled “From earth to Glass” with comments by João Nicolau de Almeida. There will be tasted the Vintages 1880 (the founding year of the company), 1924, 34, 60, 1994 and 2000.
On March 16th it will be finished with “Tradition and Innovation in the Douro”, a tasting of Burmester Colheitas and Vintages from 1920-2000 with comments by Jaime Costa. The Colheitas 1920, 22, 37, 44, 50, 63, 85 and 91 and the Vintages 1963, 85, 1991 and 2000 are then being tasted.
All tastings are followed by dinners prepared by well-known cooks, at which wine and Port Wine play a prominent part.
The day charge is 150 Euros. Hotel capacity is available. More information:

Cheese from the Serra da Estrela.
25/02/02. The “Instituto do Vinho do Porto” is going to promote the mountain cheese from the “Serra da Estrela”. This has been agreed with the producers.
Very good news for us. The cheese from the mountain chain east of Coimbra is one of the best companions of Port Wine. My wife and I still remember the exact place and time we had our first taste.
The cheese from the Serra da Estrela is soft and tasty and harmonizes excellently with all Port Wine types. Much better than the ever-mentioned “Stilton” which, in our opinion, is too prominent in taste.

Tasting IVP/Hersh.
25/02/02. On the “Wineloverspage” you can find an article called “Fifty Ways To Love Your Port” written by Roy Hersh. www.wineloverspage.com/port/hersh021502.phtml
Hersh reports on a presentation and tasting organized by the “Instituto do Vinho do Porto” (IVP) in Portland, Oregon and Seattle in the USA. The article gives good general information and tasting notes of 10 Aged Tawnies, 2 Whites, 13 Colheitas, 8 LBV´s and 17 Vintages.

New name for Taylor Fonseca.
25/02/02. After the purchase of Croft and Delaforce (see news item of 09/09/01) the Taylor Fonseca group is changing its name to “The Fladgate Partnership”. The following companies are gathered in this new holding:
- Taylor, Fladgate & Yeatman, SA
- Fonseca Guimareans – Vinhos, SA
- Croft & Ca. Lda
- Delaforce Sons & Ca – Vinhos Lda
- Hotel Vintage House do Pinhão
Três Séculos Realizações Hoteleiras (catering, Vila Nova de Gaia)
The new name is taken from John Fladgate, one of the founders of Taylor, Fladgate and Yeatman in 1844.

Harvest of 2001 too large?
16/02/02. The “Casa do Douro” is concerned that last years Port production was too large. Mid January 10% of the 200,000 pipas of each 550 liters had not yet been sold to traders.
That is why the CdoD pleads to cut next years production by 60,000 pipas. This proposal is based on the “law of one third” which stipulates that for every unsold liter last year, this years production must but 3 liters less.
The CdoD however represents only a part of the Port industry (see news item of 22/09/01).
For president Vilhena Pereira of the authorized “Comissão Interprofessional da Região Demarcada do Douro” (CIRDD) it is much too early for measures. In the “Comércio” of January 30th he says: “It is a problem, but I do not believe the solution is complicated. Trade will start again some time.”
One thing is for sure: prices will come down.

Co-operative goes in real estate and tourism.
04/02/02. The “Cooperativa Vitivinícola de Peso da Régua” is going to exploit a part of its property in the sub-municipality Godim differently. The construction of a hotel and an apartment complex on a plot of 7 hectares will commence this year. Costs amount to 12.5 million Euro and are totally self-financed.
The complex with the name “Complexo Eno - Turístico Habitacional da Quinta do Cedro” is spread over 2 slopes. One slope will have a 5 stars hotel with 30 rooms, an indoor and heated Olympic size swimming pool, a gymnasium, tennis courts and a panoramic restaurant. On the other slope 96 apartments are being built in a closed condominium together with small shops, café’s, maybe a cinema and a large central square for musical and cultural activities. The residents of the apartments will be allowed to use the hotel facilities.
The co-operative hopes to create surplus value for itself, the city and the region. It thinks that this is possible as interest in the area has grown because parts of the region have been placed on the World Cultural Heritage list of the Unesco.

Sales in 2001.
25/01/02. The “Instituto do Vinho do Porto” announced that in 2001 the Port Wine trade decreased with 1.5% to 345.5 million Euros.
France consumed most with 29%, followed by the Netherlands with 17.2%, the UK, Belgium and the USA.

Wine Magazine Febr. 02.
25/01/02-07/09/02. In the English “Wine Magazine” of February 2002 you may find 2 interesting articles about Port Wine.
1. A good article by Peter Cobb entitled “New Wave Democrat” about Vintages, Single Quinta Vintages and LBV´s. Unfortunately Cobb limits himself to the large shippers. Doing so he ignores the still small but fascinating group of independent producers and quintas (see: Files/Types 1f).
2. A price review by “Financial Wines” of Vintages available in the UK from the years 1955, 60, 63, 66, 70, 75, 77, 80, 83, 85, 94 and 97. The article mentions the maximum, the minimum and the average prices of cases with 12 bottles. The differences are large.
In a market analysis “Financial Wines” says that most prices have decreased between August and November, but prices of the key producers and Vintages have remained relatively stable.
In an additional comment on the market by Jo Stephenson and Mark Bedini of “Fine & Rare”, as well as in the market analysis by “Financial Wines”, it is said that investing in Vintage Port Wine is not the best choice at this moment. On the one side because the expectable profits are low and on the other hand because many Vintages are on the market for moderate prices.

Tasting LBV’s.
10/01/02. In Portuguese Wines no.19 of December 2001 is reproduced the report of a tasting of 45 Late Bottled Vintages (LBV’s) from 1990, 92, 94, 96 and 97 as before published in Revista de Vinhos no.142 of September 2001 (See: News item of 20/10/01).
So, now the story is also available in English.

Port Wine in the USA.
10/01/02. “Wine X U.S. Volume 4.6” publishes some 60 tasting notes of several Port Wine types. It concerns Premium Rubies and Tawnies, Vintage Characters, LVB’s, 10 and 20 Years Old Tawnies, Vintages and Single Quinta Vintages (see: Files/Types). But not all of it is real, 7 are not coming from Portugal (see: Files/What’s Port?).
The foreword is written by Christopher Sawyer. The descriptions of the tasting panel of Wine X are deviating and humorous, but it also uses ratings with 1 to 3 X's. Prices are between U$ 9.00  and U$ 82.00.
The article is called “Gettin’ fortified - port” and it is to find on www.winexwired.com Click on the cover of “Wine X U.S.Current On-Line Issue Volume 4.6” at the right side and go to “Special Tasting” page 94.

Ramos Pinto 2.
The first part of this article did we publish on 06/01/02. 
10/01/02. R.P. distinguishes itself from many other Port houses in three fields: vinicultural, artistic-cultural, and archaeological.


From the seventies R.P. participated actively in the study of grape types, viniculture and mechanization. The company pioneered in planting large areas of one grape type. Q. da Ervamoira is laid out without any terraces. In 1987 R.P. published a small book with research results, with articles from L’Amateur de Bordeaux and The Decanter Review 1990 and with a speech from 1987, all three by João Nicolau de Almeida. The first piece especially reads like an exciting story.


The founder made R.P. famous with his commissions to artists particularly for posters and advertisements. Some are still used now. All designs are based on ”Port’s appeal to the senses”. Adriano R.P. also ordered the designs of a tile picture and a leaded window in the head office, a tile picture in a factory and a fountain in Rio de Janeiro. Many designs are exposed in the company museum in Vila Nova de Gaia. José-Augusto Fran
Va wrote a monograph of these works entitled “Ramos Pinto 1880-1980”. R.P. is still active in the arts, for example with the annual ”Spring Concert” in their cellars and an annual concert series in Maksoud Plaza in São Paulo, Brazil.


Q. da Ervamoira is located in the Archaeological Park of the Valley of Côa. In the eighties the area threatened to be inundated by construction of a dam. Strong resistance prevailed with the discovery of the richest sites of Palaeolithic art in Europe. Drawings of horses, deer, goats and other animals were found in the steep river valley over a distance of 17 kilometres. In 1998 the area came on the Unesco World Cultural Heritage list.
In 1984 of an archaeological site was uncovered at Q. da Ervamoira which has been researched systematically since. The main building of the quinta has been converted into an archaeological museum, including a winery. Among the finds are: a big roman building, prior to the fourth century; a wine house from the fourth century; a paleochristian martyr basilica from the fifth/sixth century; small medieval quarters; 2 medieval houses with external fireplaces; a blacksmith’s workshop from the eighth century and a cemetery. All of this can be visited, though the conversion of the ruins into a museum is still in progress.
The museum and the archaeological sites are part of the Rota do Vinho do Porto (see: Files/Roundtrip).

Abílio Forrester Zamith: Port Wine Guide.
06/01/02. Today we published a review of the Port Wine Guide by Abílio Forrester Zamith (see: Files/Library). It is notable that a few large Port houses did not want to cooperate on the book although it is sponsored by the Instituto do Vinho do Porto. This is not new, and does nothing for the promotion of Port Wine. 
06/01/02. Today we published a review of the Port Wine Guide by Abílio Forrester Zamith (see: Files/Library). It is notable that a few large Port houses did not want to cooperate on the book although it is sponsored by the Instituto do Vinho do Porto. This is not new, and does nothing for the promotion of Port Wine.  06/01/02. Today we published a review of the Port Wine Guide by Abílio Forrester Zamith (see: Files/Library). It is notable that a few large Port houses did not want to cooperate on the book although it is sponsored by the Instituto do Vinho do Porto. This is not new, and does nothing for the promotion of Port Wine. 

Ramos Pinto.
06/01/02-04/05/02-07/09/02. Adriano Ramos Pinto, Vinhos, S.A. was founded in 1880 by its name giver. Nowadays it is fully owned by the French RP-SGPS. Champagne Louis Roederer, S.A. João Nicolau de Almeida, nephew of the founder, is in charge. A grandson of Adriano R.P., Jorge Rosas, is export director and Ana Rosas is quality control director.
R.P. owns 4 quintas:

Q. da Ervamoira (before Q. de Santa Maria) in the Douro Superior in the Rio Côa valley is 200 hectares in size of which 100 hectares under vine in the classes A (the highest) and B.
Q. do Bom Retiro in the Cima Corgo in the river Torto valley is 109 hectares in size of which 62 hectares under vine in class A.
Q. da Urtiga beside Q. do Bom Retiro is 4 hectares in size of which 3.5 hectares under vine in class A.

-         Q. de Bons Ares in the Douro Superior near Vila Nova de Foz Côa is 50 hectares in size of which 20 hectares under vine. This quinta is situated at a height of 600 metres and is too cold to grow grapes for Port Wine. The yield is used for consumption and for the production of table wine.
The company has two wineries. Q. de Bons Ares where 70% is produced, mainly of Q. da Ervamoira. The remaining 30% being produced at Q. do Bom Retiro. The lower temperature at Q. de Bons Ares is especially suited to the production of Port Wine.
On average, the annual production is 1,125,000 litres of Port Wine and 450,000 litres of table wine, among them the brand Duas Quintas. Some 10% of the necessary grapes are bought in.
R.P. produces many types of Port Wine like: Fine Ruby, Superior Tawny, Fine White, Lágrima (the sweetest White Port, see: Files/Types 3), Porto Quinado (with quinine, see: Types 1j), Q. da Urtiga - a Vintage Character, various Late Bottled Vintages, Q. da Ervamoira Tawny 10 Years Old, Q. do Bom Retiro Tawny 20 Years Old, Ramos Pinto Tawny 30 Years Old and various Vintages under the brands Ramos Pinto and Q. da Ervamoira.
Richard Mayson writes in ”Port and the Douro” (see: Files/Library): ”Ramos Pinto tends to be better known for its wood Ports than for Vintages which, though generally attractive and well made, tend to be midweight and fairly forward in style.”

The company exports 85% of its production worldwide. The main markets are Brazil, France, Paraguay, the USA and Belgium. The main markets for R.P. Vintages are the USA (43%), France, Portugal and the UK (more than 11% each).
Besides Port Wine and table wine it produces Aguardente Velha Ramos Pinto.
R.P. has another associated brand of Port Wine under the name J. Carvalho Macedo Lda. 

R.P. distinguishes itself from many other Port houses in three fields: vinicultural, artistic-cultural, and archaeological.
The second part of this item will we publish a next time.

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