Churchill's Vintage Port 1997
All Churchill’s ports are made from Grade-A grapes that are hand-picked, hand sorted, and foot trod in the ancient granite lagares (treading tanks). Johnny and the team allow an extended period of fermentation in lagares to limit the amount of brandy required in fortification which lends itself to a drier style of port. The young port spent its first winter in the Douro and then was transported in the early spring to our Churchill's ageing lodges in Vila Nova de Gaia (Porto). Here it matured in seasoned oak vats for one year, at which point the decision was made that the wine was of such quality to declare a Vintage Year. At this point, they were bottled and stored in their cellars. Churchill’s 1997 is a Vintage Port wine in the classic style; not as ripe as the 1994 but with a concentration of fresher “greener” fruit. It has what we call in the trade a “steel girder”; i.e. a good tannin structure which binds and balances the fruit and ensures good ageing potential. The Churchill's 1997 Vintage Port will age beautifully in bottle for 50+ years if stored correctly. Approachable at 15-20 years old from 2012-2017 its peak drinking will be at 30-40 years of age from 2027-2037. To serve stand the bottle upright for a few hours before decanting. It is best decanted at least two hours before service and served at room temperature.