Fonseca Vintage Port 1997
Fonseca are arguably the leading producer of Vintage Port, combining both power and finesse. Some even with the potential to last over a hundred years.
This Port has an attractive, floral nose, with elegant and complex raspberry and fresh berry aromas. A very elegant, smooth, and complete wine. Hints of tobacco and cedarwood spice and enormous depth. Lovely rich fruit and big tannins. Long finish.
In 1815, Joao dos Santos Fonseca started trading port, with Francisco Gomes Monteiro and Manuel Pedro Guimaraens entering into a partnership in the early 1820s. After several decades, the Guimaraens family acquired the house outright in 1863, but following financial hardship after World War Two, they sold to Taylor, Fladgate and Yeatman in 1949. The Guimaraens family, however, have remained actively involved since, with David Guimaraens currently head winemaker for the Fladgate group that comprises Taylors, Fonseca, Croft, and Krohn.
Fonseca ports are based on three Quintas. Cruzeiro, Santo Antonio and Quinta do Panascal. Cruzeiro contributes concentrated black fruit flavours and firm tannic grip. Panascal adds an opulent luscious fruitiness and a dense velvety texture. Finally, Santo Antonio brings complexity and vibrancy with its fine scented character and fresh acidity.
1997 was particularly cool and wet throughout most of the growing season, however, hot weather at the end of the summer saved the day with grapes ripening beautifully. In the end, a widely declared vintage with beautifully balanced ports with fine tannins and finesse, and more aromatic than most vintages thanks to the cooler start to the growing season. Fonseca were very much one of the highlights of the vintage.