VintageVintage

The magic of Vintage Port is different in every phase: as a young wine it captures the youthful fruit characters, then after 20 years or more, the wonderful effects of slow bottle age integration are revealed and finally after many decades the spirit dominates the wine. Vintage Port is amazing in all three phases. Maturation in the bottle is more reductive than cask ageing and the wine that results has a fruitiness and power which develops in the traditional black Port bottle. The wine must be decanted, serve at the end of a meal with cheese, especially blue cheese which goes really well with.

Vinification

Following a very long cold winter and a relatively cool spring and early summer, it was only in September that the weather really picked up and fruit achieved full ripeness so, in general, the harvest started late with some full bodied wines being made in granite "lagares" with foot treading.

Following 2 years ageing in large old oak vats in our cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia, the wine was bottled.

Tasting Notes

Solid red appearance, with good depth of colour. On the aroma, initially austere and closed, but with time, some notes of spice and pepper come through. Sweet fruit on the palate, revealing great freshness and a lengthy firm structure.

Technical Information

Producer

Niepoort (Vinhos) S.A.

Region

Douro

Soil Type

Schist

Vineyards

Vale do Pinhão and Ferrão

Average Vine Age

60 and over 100 years

Grape Varieties

Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Francisca, Tinta Amarela, Sousão and Tinta Roriz

Vines per HA

4000-6000

Harvest Period

September/October 1983

Harvest Method

Hand picked

Fermentation

Lagares (wine presses)/Foot treading

Bottled

1985

Ageing

2 Years in old oak vats

Dry Extract

124.1

Residual Sugar (g/dm3)

96.3

Alcohol (%)

20

Baumé

3.2

Total Acidity (g/dm3)

4.13

Volatile Acidity (g/dm3)

0.3

Total SO2 (mg/dm3)

36

Volumic Mass (g/cm3)

1.02

Food Suggestions

Perfect with “Queijo da Serra”, a Stilton or other blue cheeses. Egg based desserts with “Pão de Ló” (Portuguese sponge based cake).

Bottle

Palette

120 80

Vintage Port is bottled within two years of the harvest date and is 100% wine from that harvest. The magic of Vintage Port is different in every phase: as a young wine it captures the youthful fruit characters, then after 20 years or more the effects of the slow bottle age integration are revealed and finally after many decades the spirit dominates the wine. Vintage Port is amazing in all the three phases. Maturation in the bottle is more reductive than cask ageing and the wine that results has a fruitiness and power which develops in the traditional black Port bottle. The wine must be decanted. Serve at the end of a meal with cheese, especially blue cheese which goes really well with.

Vinification

Following a hot dry summer, grapes were in good condition at the time of harvest, if somewhat on the ripe side. Some dense colored wines were made in "lagares" by foot treading, only a few Vintage declarations were made in 1987, one of them being Niepoort. The wine, now with nearly 20 years age, exhibits wonderful bottle age character, characteristic of a fine Vintage Port.

Tasting Notes

Dark and youthful in colour for its age, now showing wonderful bottle age aroma on the nose, interspersed with a soft mint character. On the palate, the Vintage 1987 is very fine, shows good richness and a long finish.

Technical Information

Producer

Niepoort (Vinhos) S.A.

Region

Douro

Soil Type

Schist

Vineyards

Vale do Pinhão and Ferrão

Average Vine Age

Over 60 years

Grape Varieties

Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Francisca, Tinta Amarela, Sousão, Tinta Roriz and others

Vines per HA

4000-6000

Harvest Period

September/October

Harvest Method

Hand picked

Fermentation

Lagares (wine presses)/Foot treading

Bottled

1989

Ageing

2 years in large old oak vats

Dry Extract

126.68

Residual Sugar (g/dm3)

100.4

Alcohol (%)

20.7

Baumé

3.3

pH

3.7

Total Acidity (g/dm3)

4.13

Volatile Acidity (g/dm3)

0.3

Total SO2 (mg/dm3)

27

Volumic Mass (g/cm3)

1.02

Production

40.500 litres

Food Suggestions

Perfect with “Queijo da Serra”, a Stilton or other blue cheeses. Egg based desserts with “Pão de Ló” (Portuguese sponge based cake).

Bottle

Box

17.7 24 × 6 10120.4 wood

Palette

120 80 × 8 Rows 80 Boxes

At the time of declaration, there was much debate as to the merits of the 1992 versus the 1991 Vintage. The majority of shippers at the time went for one year or the other, while Niepoort went one better and declared them both. The 1992 Vintage continues Niepoort´s tradition to create balanced Ports with great concentration but simultaneously fine and delicate.

Vinification

As with most classic Vintage Ports, the weather during the agricultural year preceding the harvest was near perfect, with low rainfall during the winter and spring, however the light showers that fell in June, the heavy rainfall during the last three days of August and the onset of cooler nights in September was invaluable in allowing grape maturity to proceed to completion.

The 1992 harvest initiated under favourable weather towards the end of September with only the odd shower towards the end of the harvest. Fruit quality was consistently good, with high skin to juice ratio in the fermenting musts and excellent aromas.

The Niepoort 1992 Vintage was sourced from small parcels of old Vineyards in the Pinhão Valley, and following ageing in our cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia, 53,000 bottles were bottled in the Autumn of 1994.

Tasting Notes

Medium depth of colour with a red rim. On the aroma, starting to show some wonderful bottle age which follows through on the palate with a mild bitter chocolate character and fresh dark fruits. Good weight freshness and extract on the palate leading to a spirit dominated finish.

Technical Information

Producer

Niepoort (Vinhos) S.A.

Region

Douro

Soil Type

Schist

Vineyards

Old vineyards in Pinhão Valley

Average Vine Age

60 and over 100 years

Grape Varieties

Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Francisca, Tinta Amarela, Sousão, Tinta Roriz and others

Vines per HA

4000-6000

Harvest Period

September/October 1992

Harvest Method

Hand picked

Fermentation

Lagares (wine presses)/Foot treading

Bottled

Autumn 1994

Ageing

2 years in large old oak vats

Dry Extract

131.1

Residual Sugar (g/dm3)

100.2

Alcohol (%)

20

Baumé

3.5

pH

3.9

Total Acidity (g/dm3)

3.83

Volatile Acidity (g/dm3)

0.3

Total SO2 (mg/dm3)

18

Volumic Mass (g/cm3)

1.02

Food Suggestions

Perfect with “Queijo da Serra”, a Stilton or other blue cheeses. Egg based desserts with “Pão de Ló” (Portuguese sponge based cake).

Another classic Niepoort vintage: combining balance with superb concentration, and at the same time very fine and delicate. The wine also has a splendid rustic character giving it a wonderful individuality.

Vinification

It was created from low-yielding old vines in the Cima Corgo region of Douro Valley. The grapes were trodden in "lagares" and later the Port was matured in large wooden vats and also in barrels at our lodges in Vila Nova de Gaia.

Tasting Notes

Concentrated aromas of ripe dark fruits, damsons and hints of black pepper. Intense on the palate and full bodied with a long rich after-taste.

It can be enjoyed now, but will become more complex with further cellaring until 2015.

Technical Information

Producer

Niepoort (Vinhos) S.A.

Region

Douro

Soil Type

Schist

Vineyards

Vinha da Pisca, Vale do Pinhão and Ferrão

Average Vine Age

Over 60 years

Grape Varieties

Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Francisca, Tinta Amarela, Sousão, Tinta Roriz and others

Vines per HA

4000-6000

Harvest Period

September/October 2000

Harvest Method

Hand picked

Fermentation

Lagares (wine presses)/Foot treading

Bottled

September 2005

Ageing

2 years in cask

Residual Sugar (g/dm3)

103

Alcohol (%)

20.5

Baumé

3.4

pH

3.59

Total Acidity (g/dm3)

4.2

Production

35.000 litres

Food Suggestions

Perfect with “Queijo da Serra”, a Stilton or other blue cheeses. Egg based desserts with “Pão de Ló” (Portuguese sponge based cake).

Bottle

Box

17.7 24 × 6 10120.4 wood

Palette

120 80 × 8 Rows 80 Boxes

This Vintage continues Niepoort's tradition to create balanced Ports with great concentration but simultaneously fine and delicate. At Niepoort we predict that this vintage will be one of the finest in decades...

Vinification

In 2003, the harvest had very hot days and also very humid days. The production was high but with small grapes that produced concentrated tannins and colour. Overriped and dry grapes were taken out to reassure the finesse of the wine.

Vinha da Pisca, (very old vineyard), with notes of coffee and black berries gave the final blend the desired finesse. In September 2005, the cycle for Niepoort Vintage 2003 was completed and now the wine ages in the final bottle, (32.000 bottles of 750ml).

Tasting Notes

Fine, elegant, mineral but not balsamic. The taste continues fine, aggressive and with tannins, rich but not excessive and with a long final. Impressive finesse even though robust.

Technical Information

Producer

Niepoort (Vinhos) S.A.

Region

Douro

Soil Type

Schist

Vineyards

Vinha da Pisca, Vale do Pinhão and Ferrão

Average Vine Age

60 and over 100 years

Grape Varieties

Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Francisca, Tinta Amarela, Sousão and Tinta Roriz

Vines per HA

4000-6000

Harvest Period

September/October 2003

Harvest Method

Hand picked

Fermentation

Lagares (wine presses)/Foot treading

Bottled

September 2005

Ageing

2 years in cask

Dry Extract

133.2

Residual Sugar (g/dm3)

99

Alcohol (%)

20

Baumé

3.6

pH

3.56

Total Acidity (g/dm3)

4.81

Volatile Acidity (g/dm3)

0.3

Total SO2 (mg/dm3)

109

Volumic Mass (g/cm3)

1.02

Production

32.000 bottles

Food Suggestions

Perfect with “Queijo da Serra”, a Stilton or other blue cheeses. Egg based desserts with “Pão de Ló” (Portuguese sponge based cake).

Bottle

Box

17.7 24 × 6 10120.4 wood

Palette

120 80 × 8 Rows 80 Boxes

This vintage continues Niepoort's tradition to create balanced Ports with great concentration but simultaneously fine and delicate. Once again, at Niepoort, we believe that we managed to produce a Vintage Port to last for decades...

Vinification

In 2005 the harvest had very hot and also very humid days. The production was high but with small berries that have concentrated the tannins and colour. Overripe and dry grapes were taken out to reassure the finesse of the wine. Vinha da Pisca (very old vineyard) with notes of coffee and black berries gave the final blend the desired freshness.

Tasting Notes

Fine, elegant, mineral but not balsamic, the floral and fruity character are enhanced. The taste continues fine, although it's a tannic wine. Rich but not excessive and with a long spicy aftertaste. Impressive finesse even though robust.

Technical Information

Producer

Niepoort (Vinhos) S.A.

Region

Douro

Soil Type

Schist

Vineyards

Vinha da Pisca, Pinhão and Ferrão

Average Vine Age

60 and over 100 years

Grape Varieties

Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Francisca, Tinta Amarela, Sousão and Tinta Roriz

Vines per HA

4000-6000

Harvest Period

September/October 2005

Harvest Method

Hand picked

Fermentation

Lagares (wine presses)/Foot treading

Bottled

July 2007

Ageing

2 years in cask

Dry Extract

126.7

Residual Sugar (g/dm3)

97.9

Alcohol (%)

20

Baumé

3.4

pH

3.59

Total Acidity (g/dm3)

4.06

Volatile Acidity (g/dm3)

0.25

Total SO2 (mg/dm3)

41

Volumic Mass (g/cm3)

1.02

Production

24.000 liters

Food Suggestions

Perfect with “Queijo da Serra”, a Stilton or other blue cheeses. Egg based desserts with “Pão de Ló” (Portuguese sponge based cake).

Bottle

Box

17.7 24 × 6 10120.4 wood

Palette

120 80 × 8 Rows 80 Boxes

This Vintage continues Niepoort’s tradition to create balanced Ports with great concentration while simultaneously fine and delicate. Once again, at Niepoort, we believe that we managed to produce a Vintage Port to last for decades...

Vinification

After several dry winters, the 2006/2007 winter was most useful in replenishing dwindling water reserves. In 2007, the harvest initiated at Niepoort’s historic winery in Vale de Mendiz on Friday 14th of September. Apart from a brief thunderstorm on the 16th of September and the odd light shower at the end of the month, the harvest was carried out under excellent conditions.

Fermenting musts exhibited dark colours with spectacular purple hues and very good acid balance.

Tasting Notes

The Niepoort 2007 has benefited from a second winter to further close up its dense purple colour. On the aroma, dark fruits are wonderfully contrasted with slightly green nuances and great finesse. On the palate, medium sweet, which combines well, with a very tight structure. The taste exhibits firm tannins and length but with great finesse in evidence.

Technical Information

Producer

Niepoort (Vinhos) S.A.

Region

Douro

Soil Type

Schist

Vineyards

Vinha da Pisca/Pinhão/Ferrão

Average Vine Age

60 and over 100 years

Grape Varieties

Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Francisca, Tinta Amarela, Sousão, Tinta Roriz and others

Vines per HA

4000-6000

Harvest Period

September/October 2007

Harvest Method

Hand picked

Fermentation

Lagares (wine presses)/Foot treading

Bottled

May 2009

Ageing

2 years in large old vats

Residual Sugar (g/dm3)

98.2

Alcohol (%)

20

Baumé

3.4

pH

3.6

Total Acidity (g/dm3)

4.82

Total SO2 (mg/dm3)

56

Production

20.000 litres

Food Suggestions

Perfect with “Queijo da Serra”, a Stilton or other blue cheeses. Egg based desserts with “Pão de Ló” (Portuguese sponge based cake).

2009 has all the ingredients of a classic Vintage year: POWER & ELEGANCE. Low yields, perfect maturation, great concentration and on top of that great acidity. It was clear for us from the start of the 2009 harvest that the perfect conditions for Port were there: timings of picking were perfect and the weather conditions ideal. The youngest vineyard is over 80 years old and all the fruit comes from Cima Corgo. The grape varieties are the “usual suspects” from typical mixed vineyards. This Vintage continues Niepoort’s tradition to create balanced Ports with great concentration but fine and delicate.

Vinification

All the components for our 2009 Vintage Port were trodden by foot in circular granite "lagares" at our Port winery in Vale de Mendiz. As usual for a Vintage of this quality, we included almost 100% stems in the vinification. The component Ports were racked soon after harvest, and aged in "tonéis" in the Douro over the winter, before moving them to Vila Nova de Gaia in March 2010. From there, we re-tasted extensively in order to find the ideal wines for a 2009 Niepoort Vintage Port. The final blend then rested again in "tonéis" at our lodges in Vila Nova de Gaia, until bottling in May 2011.

Tasting Notes

It has a voluptuous nose with great fruit, but also very spicy and peppery. On the palate, this Port is highly concentrated, with huge structure, and massive, but sexy, tannins. A Vintage Port of power, elegance, and balance. Once again, at Niepoort, we believe that we have produced Vintage Port to last for decades to come.

Technical Information

Producer

Niepoort (Vinhos) S.A.

Region

Douro

Soil Type

Schist

Vineyards

Several in the Cima Corgo

Average Vine Age

80 and over 100 years

Grape Varieties

Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Francisca, Tinta Amarela, Sousão, Tinta Roriz and others

Vines per HA

4000-6000

Harvest Period

September/October 2009

Harvest Method

Hand picked

Fermentation

Lagares (wine presses)/Foot treading

Bottled

May 2011

Ageing

2 years in “tonéis” and some pipes

Residual Sugar (g/dm3)

100.2

Alcohol (%)

20.5

Baumé

3.2

pH

3.58

Total Acidity (g/dm3)

4.93

Total SO2 (mg/dm3)

78

Production

15.000 litres

Food Suggestions

Perfect with “Queijo da Serra”, a Stilton or other blue cheeses. Egg based desserts with “Pão de Ló” (Portuguese sponge based cake).

2011 Vintage continues Niepoort’s tradition to create balanced Ports with great concentration but fine and delicate.

In the end, low yields combined with very good acidity and great colour turned up in a perfect year for Vintage Port. It is worth noting that when the fermenting musts are fortified, there is a temporary loss of colour which picks up straight away as the brandy blends with the musts, however in 2011 it was interesting to observe that young Ports were immediately, extremely dark at the point of fortification and have remained so ever since.

Vinification

The agricultural year in 2011 will be remembered for relatively low precipitation during the winter and an unusually early bud burst in March, along with a sudden extreme heat in June which literally led to burnt clusters in exposed and early varieties such as Tinta Barroca. Although July and the end of August were relatively cool with some light precipitation in the final days of August and first days of September, temperatures picked up and the harvest had to be accelerated to avoid berry shrivel.

All the components for 2011 Vintage Port were trodden by foot in circular granite "lagares" at Vale de Mendiz, the Port winery. 100% stems were included in the vinification. The wines were racked soon after harvest, aged in "tonéis" in the Douro over the winter, and then moved to Vila Nova de Gaia, in March 2010. From there, they were re-tasted extensively in order to find the ideal components for the 2011 Vintage Port. The final blend then rested again in "tonéis" at our lodges in Vila Nova de Gaia, prior to bottling.

Tasting Notes

The colour of the 2011 Vintage has further benefited from a cold second winter, showing a dark purple colour right up to the rim of the glass. The aroma is fine with great vinosity, notes of black pepper and dark fruits. The palate is fresh and elegant but underpinned with a lengthy tannic structure giving it great length.

Technical Information

Producer

Niepoort (Vinhos) S.A.

Region

Douro

Soil Type

Schist

Vineyards

Several in the Cima Corgo

Average Vine Age

80 and over 100 years

Grape Varieties

Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Francisca, Tinta Amarela, Sousão, Tinta Roriz and others

Vines per HA

4000-6000

Harvest Period

September/October 2011

Harvest Method

Hand picked

Fermentation

Lagares (wine presses)/Foot treading

Bottled

End of June 2013

Ageing

2 years in "tonéis" and some pipes

Dry Extract

131.6

Residual Sugar (g/dm3)

104

Alcohol (%)

19.5

Baumé

3.8

pH

3.57

Total Acidity (g/dm3)

5.06

Volatile Acidity (g/dm3)

0.26

Total SO2 (mg/dm3)

80

Volumic Mass (g/cm3)

1

Production

15.000 litres

Food Suggestions

Perfect with “Queijo da Serra”, a Stilton or other blue cheeses. Egg based desserts with “Pão de Ló” (Portuguese sponge based cake).

2015 was as perfect as it gets, particularly for Port – a year where we had time to think and make the right decisions, with the weather helping enormously.

Picked at the perfect time, 40% originating from our Pisca vineyard and 60% from different small parcels, all over 80 years old, the Ports were foot-trodden and made in lagares in Vale de Mendiz, with 100% of the stems.

This resulted in incredible Ports with an unusual dimension, impressive structure with fine and intense tannins, great concentration but always accompanied by balance and harmony.

All the elements seem to have fallen into place to ensure that this Vintage will outlive the 1955, 1970 perhaps even the 1945 Ports (but after vastly different harvest conditions)…

The sweetness is masked by the wonderfully robust tannins, the alcohol by the generous concentration, with the fantastic natural acidity of 2015 providing an overall balance.

The nose is shy but focused, no overripe prune-like characteristics, just a gentle and elegant expression of fruit and complexity – it is a joy just to smell all the hidden elements.

The balance and harmony in the bottle promise a great future: these are bottles to taste in the coming years in order to smile at its youth, to drink properly in 20 years and to enjoy fully in 40 years. A Vintage which is actually destined for the next generations so they can admire the beauty that the Douro is able to deliver.

Dirk Niepoort, 4 May 2017

THE BEST VINTAGE PORT OF THIS CENTURY

Vinification

All the components for the 2015 Vintage Port were foot-trodden in circular granite lagares at Vale de Mendiz, the Port winery. The wine was vinified with 100% of the stems. Soon after harvest, the wines were racked, aged in tonéis, wooden vats, in the Douro over the winter, and then moved to Vila Nova de Gaia, in April 2016. The final blend then matured further in tonéis at our lodges in Vila Nova de Gaia, prior to bottling.

The 2014/15 viticultural year experienced a cold and very dry winter, with rainfall at a record low compared to previous years. In addition, the spring and summer were dry and hot with three heat waves occurring in June/July, prior to a cooler month of August – the low humidity ensured that the incidence of disease was at an all-time low, and as a result, the vineyards delivered superb, clean fruit – an indicator of paramount importance for a great Vintage Port.

At Niepoort, in Vale de Mendiz, harvest started on 28 August under fine conditions. Even the rain on 15 and 16 September as well as the lower temperatures were most beneficial, allowing the grapes to reach full maturity without the problems of splitting and subsequent rot which could be expected in a year with normal levels of soil humidity.

The 2015 vintage perpetuates Niepoort’s tradition of creating balanced Ports which offer great concentration but also incredible elegant and finesse. What makes the 2015 vintage so unique is the purity of fruit – a result of low humidity during the growing season which was not affected by the rain on 15 and 16 September. It provided a diversity of parcels from which to blend the 2015 Vintage Port – some more acid-driven, from the early September harvest before the rain, and others slightly riper and harvested after mid-September.

Tasting Notes

In a great year like 2015, the big challenge was selecting the final blend from more than 60 000 litres of very good quality wines, all of them worthy of great Vintage Port status. For more than a year, Dirk Niepoort, Nicholas Delaforce and Rodrigo Nogueira examined the wines carefully and meticulously selected the best vats.

In April 2017 near perfection was achieved when a blend of 20 000 litres was finalised. We have a great Vintage on our hands, showing beautiful concentration, vigour and complexity, but with plenty of finesse and remarkable freshness. Compared to the 2011 vintage, despite the tannins also being very robust, the 2015 gives us a silky wine, with great structure and incredible balance thanks to its taut acidity and lower level of sweetness, which results in a fresher wine.

Technical Information

Producer

Niepoort Vinhos SA

Region

Douro

Soil Type

Schist

Vineyards

All the components for the 2015 Vintage Port were foot-trodden in circular granite lagares at Vale de Mendiz, the Port winery. The wine was vinified with 100% of the stems. Soon after harvest, the wines were racked, aged in tonéis, wooden vats, in the Douro over the winter, and then moved to Vila Nova de Gaia, in April 2016. The final blend then matured further in tonéis at our lodges in Vila Nova de Gaia, prior to bottling.

Average Vine Age

80 to 100 years

Grape Varieties

Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Francisca, Tinta Amarela, Sousão, Tinta Roriz and others

Vines per HA

4000-6000

Harvest Period

September 2015

Harvest Method

Handpicked

Malolactic

no

Fermentation

Lagares (wine presses)/Foot treading

Bottled

Junho 2017

Ageing

2 years in "tonéis"

Residual Sugar (g/dm3)

101

Alcohol (%)

19.5

pH

3.61

Total Acidity (g/dm3)

4.34

Volatile Acidity (g/dm3)

0.18

Total SO2 (mg/dm3)

60

Production

20.000 litros

Food Suggestions

Perfect with “Queijo da Serra”, a Stilton or other blue cheeses. Egg based desserts with “Pão de Ló” (Portuguese sponge based cake).