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Dow's 2016 Vintage Port

dryness
acidity
tannin
body
fruit
Vinous 98
Wine Spectator 98
Decanter 98

Mission Codename Since 1798

New Year’s Eve 2081. Operative Joe is sitting by the fireplace sipping his eggnog, when his 2-year-old grandson jumps in his lap, sending the cup flying in air. It’s a mess. But it’s an ongoing celebration of life, so nobody cares. A quick all-hands-on deck cleanup later, he summons his daughter to head to their modest wine cellar, where only a few of his most prized possessions remain. She comes back with this 2016 Dow’s all dusty yet still in great shape underneath. It’s time to unravel the magic…

Rewind to today: “Simply one of the best Dow’s ever made.” - Vinous

Vintage Port is a century-long proposal, they are amongst the longest-lived in the whole wide world of wine. Yet that’s not the #1 reason why today’s offering was Wine Spectator’s Wine of the Year in 2014. They awarded it so “for its combination of power, quality and fair price” adding that it “stands as a monument to quality and the modernization of the Douro.”

With an “Eight Ways Wine Will Change in 2021” predictions Bloomberg declared that “The wine country of 2021 will be … Portugal” and that “The thirst for discovery rolls on, and Portugal is becoming the latest hotspot. Why did sales of the country’s wines surge 35.1% in September alone in the US.? It’s simple: quality-price ratio. They’re delicious, food-friendly, inexpensive, and more than worth the cost. Douro Valley reds are stunning…”

That of course includes THE ORIGINAL Douro Red, the wine they take the most national pride in making, Vintage Port. And Dow’s is the ultimate example of a classic in this sometimes-overlooked genre. With multiple huge scores and built to last virtually forever, it’s a no-brainer, for investment and enjoyment.

The appearance is so pitch dark and opaque that you could fill a fountain pen with it. A kaleidoscope of ripe black fruits, exotic dates, cured meats, orange peel, and whatnot define the infinitely complex nose. The palate then strikes an ephemeral balance between layers of fruitiness backed by a firm, juicy spine. Not much to say in the end if there is one, we surely don’t see this finish quitting anytime soon, almost eternal. Best on its own, and fascinatingly approachable at youth yet it sure is begging for cellaring too, if you have the patience to wait up a century.

Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate builds a compelling case: “Folks, I keep saying that Port is one of the world’s greatest wine values. Here, you get top terroir, a top producer and a wine that is being re-released with some 20 years of age on it. The price points in that context are remarkably low–and those are just ‘suggested’ prices. Retail might even have some bargains from there.”

Back to Vinous, a euphoric Neal Martin aptly concludes that what we have here is “with almost careless abandon, a Vintage Port so self-assured that you can only sit back in amazement.”

This is an insane value as the best price in the US BY FAR despite its TRIPLE 98-points, however, it’s not that big a stash, so hop on the bandwagon, fast!

98 Point – Antonio Galloni’s Vinous

“The 2016 Dow’s Vintage Port is based around the Vinha dos Ecos vineyard behind Bomfim, populated predominantly by mature Touriga Franca vines that were cropped at just 0.68 kg per vine. It has a quite astonishing bouquet with layer upon layer of intense black cherry and cassis fruit, touches of clove, leather and a hint of over-ripe Satsuma. This is a mercurial bouquet that keeps changing in the glass, revealing smoky/burning ember scents with time. The palate is quite magnificent – perfectly balanced with a killer thread of acidity slicing through such pure intense black fruit that there is no heaviness at all. There is a sense of thrust on the finish as it fans out with almost careless abandon, a Vintage Port so self-assured that you can only sit back in amazement. Simply one of the best Dow’s ever made. Drink 2030-2086.”

98 Point – Wine Spectator

“This packs a lot of fun, with a wallop of blackberry, fig, boysenberry and açai berry compote flavors working together, laced with a mouthwatering licorice snap note and driven by a fresh, well-detailed finish. A roasted apple wood accent is integrated as well, lending textural contrast through the vivacious finish. Best from 2030 through 2055.”

98 Points – Decanter

“Based on Touriga Franca with Touriga Nacional and Sousão. Tight-knit, with firm, rapier-like tannins on the palate – a ramrod all the way through with the opulence and flesh of the fruit on the finish. Fine-grained with great purity and expression. Leaner and much more restrained in style than others: the drier style of Dow works really well in ripe years such as 2016 (as it did in 2011). Outstanding wine for the long term.”

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Tasting Profile Tasting Profile

Dow's 2016 Vintage Port 750ml Wine Label
Dow's 2016 Vintage Port 750ml Wine Label
dryness
acidity
tannin
body
fruit
Look

So pitch dark and opaque that you could fill a fountain pen with it

Smell

A kaleidoscope of ripe black fruits, exotic dates, cured meats, orange peel, and whatnot

Taste

Strikes an ephemeral balance between layers of fruitiness backed by a firm, juicy spine

Finish

Not much to say here, really don’t see this finish quitting anytime soon, almost eternal

Pairing

Best on its own, and fascinatingly approachable at youth yet begging for cellaring

What the Winery Says 2016 Vintage Port

Dow's
Dow's
Winemakers
Charles Symington, Pedro Sousa, Ricardo Carvalho
Varietals
48% Touriga Franca, 31% Touriga Nacional, 11% Sousão, 10% Alicante Bouschet, etc
Vintage
2016
Appellation
Douro Valley, Portugal
Vineyards
Quintas do Bomfim (52%), da Senhora da Ribeira (37%), do Cabeço (7%), da Cerdeira (4%)
Alcohol (fortified to)
%20
Soils
Rocky schist mixed with granite
Treading
Robotic lagares
Total acidity
4.46 g/l
Residual sugar
111 g/l
Maturation
18 months
Barrels
Seasoned oak casks

About the Winery Dow's

Dow's Winemaker Charles Symington, Pedro Sousa, Ricardo Carvalho
Dow's Winemaker Charles Symington, Pedro Sousa, Ricardo Carvalho
Dow's 2016 Vintage Port 750ml Wine Bottle
Offer Expired May 31, 2021 at 11:59 pm
$00.00
Price Redacted
$150.00
Elsewhere
Dow's 2016 Vintage Port 750ml Wine Bottle
Offer Expired May 31, 2021 at 11:59 pm
$00.00
Price Redacted
$150.00
Elsewhere