Graham's Port Vintage
Vintage Ports are only made on very exceptional years (usually three or four times in a decade).
The principal determining factor is the weather in the vineyards which must be ideal throughout the viticultural season and subsequently during the harvest.
Only a few exceptional vineyards in the Upper Douro region produce wines of sufficient body and style to make a true Vintage Port.
After the harvest, wines of Vintage potential are put into oak barrels called 'pipes'. Some eighteen months later a careful and painstaking series of tastings is held to judge exactly which wines of different vineyards merit inclusion in the final blend. If the ideal blend is achieved, the wine is then bottled without any filtration whatsoever approximately 24 months after the original harvest .
Vintage Port must then be matured for some ten to twenty years in cool dark cellars as it gradually achieves the outstanding style of a great wine.
| Wine Spectator 93 points (Jun 15 1989)
A superb achievement from a very underrated year. Deep dark ruby-purple, with rich floral and violet aromas, full-bodied, with masses of strawberry flavors, full tannins and a long finish. -JS
Wine Advocate 92 points (Jan 1989)
Graham is another great port house, producing one of the deepest-colored and sweetest styles of vintage port. Along with Taylor and Fonseca, Graham has probably been the most consistent producer of great port in the post- World War II era. Their tawnys are quite good rather than exceptional, but their vintage ports are truly sublime and sumptuous. The 1983, like most vintage ports, seems more forward than normal but has a great depth of very ripe, viscous, unctuous, plummy, tarry fruit and significant tannin in its long finish. It is black-purple in color. I doubt that it will be either as profound or as long-lived as the great 1977, but is is certainly one of the top two or three ports of this vintage, and better than the excellent 1980.