UNCORK A BOTTLE
New to port? Wine expert Michael Green offers some tasting notes on some top bottles — all produced in
Keeping Up Traditions
1. Pass the port. "What does this mean?," you ask. It means the host pours a glass for the person on the right and then passes the bottle to the person on the left, who in turn pours right and passes left, and so on, until the bottle makes its way back to the host. The custom is an old naval tradition and possibly stems from the fact that ships pass one another on the left, which is known as port to port.
2. If the bottle stops getting passed around the table, say to the person nearest to it, “Do you know the bishop of
3. It’s bad form to recork the bottle; you pass and pour until it’s empty. In fact, some even say that the bottle shouldn’t touch the table again until it’s been emptied. Bottoms up. — Anna Fialho
Try a bottle
1 Warre’s “Otima” 10 Year Old Tawny, $20 “A lighter style of tawny port and a great aperitif. Raisins meet creme-brule!”
2 Cockburn’s Quinta dos Canais 2003, $56 “A delicious single-vineyard port marked by vibrant color, jammy plum and black fruit flavors, a medium body, and firm tannins.”
3 Taylor Fladgate Late Bottled Vintage 2001, $23 “A wonderful value; glorious sweet black fruit and licorice aromas.”
4 Osborne Late Bottled Vintage 2000, $19 A “luscious, juicy, mature port” that’s a “slam dunk” with chocolate.
5 Fonseca Vintage Port 2003, $92 “A classic vintage port that will age gracefully for years. Complex, with notes of licorice, blackberry, and spice. Plush mouthfeel and just plain yummy. Worth the splurge!”
6 Graham’s Six Grapes, $23 This ruby port “from one of the great port houses” has “heady aromas of raisin, prune, and dark fruits.”
7 Dow’s Colheita Port, $34 “Aged in wood for over seven years; tasty flavors of almond and caramel.”