It has been a long wait since 2011, a Vintage which garnered worldwide recognition for Dow’s when Wine Spectator named it No1 Wine of The Year and which followed the remarkable 2007 with 100-points result in the Wine Spectator. In 2016, perfect conditions enabled the production of an outstanding wine and one that will enhance the great Dow’s Vintage Port tradition.
The 2016 year was viticulturally unusual with an unseasonably warm winter and an unusually cool spring, with plentiful rainfall across both seasons. This water was critical in sustaining the vines during a hot and dry summer. The abundant rainfall was what clearly differentiated 2015 from 2016. While both years were amongst the hottest on record, the latter had a rainfall surplus, while the former had a rainfall deficit. The importance of adequate soil moisture levels during the 2016 ripening cycle was highlighted by Charles Symington in his harvest report.
Very Dow in its intensity, taut, and lean with the vigor of a young thoroughbred. Typical Dow’s deep, brooding aromas of black plum and Douro schist with lavender and violet notes. Profound and substantial on the palate. A beautifully toned wine of impressive structure.
After about 10 years of aging in the bottle horizontally in a dark place with a constant cool temperature, this wine will throw a sediment and will require decanting. It can be drunk young by those who enjoy a more fruit-driven style, but will also age superbly over the decades to come.