The 2012 Quinta de Vargellas Port, a typical Douro blend, was aged in large French oak vats for 24 months and bottled in 2014. It comes in at 103 grams per liter of residual sugar. This opens steely and gripping, with fine acidity, firmness on the finish and enough concentration in this lighter-styled vintage. The best of the trio submitted by Taylor Fladgate this issue, it does everything well and mostly exceeds expectations. It more or less combines a bit of the initial power displayed by the Fonseca and the expressiveness of the Croft, and adds silky texture, gloriously fresh fruit and fine flavor. It will need a little patience, but it will also be rather hard to keep your hands off of it. The good news is that it did seem to come around surprisingly fast, becoming a bit less impressive than on first impression. By Day 3, it was quite accessible and it drank fairly well. I still liked it a lot.
Vargellas is always associated with violet aromas as well as the strength and power of its wines inside a velvet glove. The 2012 is concentrated yet soft and smooth on the surface. It’s fruity and fresh, while brooding with inner strength. Drink now for its fruit; wait until 2021 for its power and longevity.
Pretty violet and red currant flavors dominate this fresh, fruity, silky style. Very suave midpalate, featuring accents of raspberry preserves. Drink now through 2040.
Typical Vargellas character with flowers such as roses and poppies that turn to dark fruits and spices. Full body, lightly sweet, dusty tannins and a raspberry and blackberry character. Long and flavorful. All in elegance and finesse. Barrel sample.
A cold, dry winter set the stage for small berries and low yields at Vargellas, in the arid Douro Superior. As a young wine, this tastes of pure blackberry essence, long on earthy tannins and equally long on alcohol driving the fruit flavors through the finish. Floral scents of violets add an elegant note to the fruit. Vargellas often needs a decade or more to begin to show its potential and this may well be at its best in 20 years.
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