40 Year Old Tawny Port Wooden Box

Douro

Sandeman Port

There are few more iconic images in the world of wine than the...

‘Don’, the logo created for the Sandeman family in 1928 by George Massiot Brown. The cape was modelled on the attire worn by university students in Porto, while the wide-brimmed hat was a nod to the family’s presence in Jerez. Today, the wines are good enough to be every bit as famous as the image of the Don. This hasn’t always been the case, but since Sogrape bought Sandeman from Seagram in 2002, the major investment that has taken place in the vineyards and the winemaking has seen them rise to the top of the tree in Port. The production of Port – especially Tawny – requires patience and a long-term vision, something which explains why families like the Guedes and the Symingtons are the major players in the Port business today.

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Vineyards

The soil in the Douro Valley is made up of schist - a slate-like metamorphic rock that is rich in nutrients and has useful water retention properties. The vines are grown on terraces cut into the steep hillsides of the Douro Valley. The terraces are walled with cut schist to prevent erosion, otherwise torrential rains would wash loose stones down the slopes and into the river. Each terrace can hold up to three rows of vines.

Vinification

Sandeman 40 Year Old Tawny is produced by the traditional Port method. The hand-picked grapes are destemmed and crushed before fermentation at controlled temperatures, with skin maceration to extract tannin, colour and flavour. The addition of grape spirit at the ideal moment sets the balance between the wine's sweetness and bouquet. The moment of fortification is chosen by the winemaker following strict control of fermentation temperatures and densities according to the vine variety, maturation stage and the final sweetness required. After the harvest, the wines remain in the Douro until the following spring, when they are taken to Vila Nova de Gaia and enter Sandeman's centuries-old lodges for ageing in small oak casks. Over the years, the wines selected for this 40 Year Old Tawny are carefully tasted, analysed and racked from lees. The final blend results from a selection of wines of between 30 and 55 years of age, masterfully blended to maintain consistency and character.

Tasting Notes

The oldest of Sandeman’s age indicated Tawnies has a bright tawny colour in the glass. The nose is intensely scented with a massive bouquet suggesting vanilla, spice and honey and the palate is a complex mouthful of spiced dried fruits and roasted nuts. The wine unfolds smoothly and reveals a superb balance of long wood ageing and vibrant fruits.

Vintage Information

Vintage NV
Grape varieties 0% Tinta Amarela
0% Tinta Roriz
0% Tinta Barroca
0% Tinto Cão
0% Touriga Franca
Region Douro
Winemaker Luís Sottomayor
Alcohol (ABV) 20%
Acidity 5.9g/l
Residual Sugar 125g/l
Wine pH 3.45