Van Zeller LBV Port 2019
Cristiano Van Zeller gives some background on LBV and Vintage ports. “By the end of World War II, my great-grandfather, Luís de Vasconcellos Porto, was running Quinta do Noval, a Port Company founded in 1813 by my 4th great-grandfather José António da Silva, and later named after his son, António José da Silva.
The company’s main market was the UK, where its wines had been represented for many years by the Rutherford family. Because of the war, Vintage Port was scarce on the market, and Colonel Jack Rutherford who had bought some of Noval ports in bulk (as it was usual at the time, before exporting Port in bulk became forbidden), instead of bottling them as Vintage Port after two years as normal, decided to keep a small part in casks and bottle them a couple of years later in half-bottles to enjoy them after dinner with his wife.
Vintage Port was traditionally considered to have to age at least 12 to 15 years in bottle to be properly appreciated, but Colonel Rutherford was persuaded that the two to four extra years in the cask would allow the wine to be drinkable much earlier, while keeping the “Vintage character”.
The quality of those wines convinced my great-grandfather Luís de Vasconcellos Porto and Colonel Jack Rutherford to launch this new category of Port commercially in the early 50’s, which they did with great success. It was an unfiltered Port, just like Vintage Port. The style became very popular during the 1970’s and beyond, as Noval was followed by other traditional Port companies. For commercial reasons most started to stabilise and filter their LBVs, but some brands resisted the so-called commercial filtered style and continued to bottle their LBV’s in the old traditional way, presenting it as a true alternative to an everyday glass of Vintage Port. This is the case for our LBV Ports."
The port is deep in colour, with an intense aroma and taste of elderberry, blackcurrant, blueberry and cocoa. A full bodied LBV, which we would recommend you decant as the wine is unfiltered. When open, the wine stays fresh for 2-4 weeks after opening.
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