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The extraordinary quality of the wines from the Malvedos vineyard is such that in Vintage declarations these wines provide the main structure of Graham’s classic Vintage Ports. In most interim years, the wines from Malvedos merit bottling as a Single Quinta Vintage Port: Graham’s Quinta dos Malvedos Vintage Port.
Graham’s Malvedos Vintage Ports have won an astonishing collection of awards at the world’s major international wine competitions over recent years, with 14 Gold medalsover the last two decades, clearly outperforming all other Quinta Vintage Ports.
Like the great wines from the top estates of Bordeaux, Single Quinta Vintage Port is made from the grapes of a single harvest and from an individual estate. Single Quinta Vintage Ports are produced and bottled in the same way as Vintage Ports, but they are made in undeclared years. These wines are very similar, and very good value alternatives, to classic Vintages and express the character of the terroir from which they come.Malvedos Vintage Ports are bottled without filtration and so will continue to age like a classic Vintage Port. They are usually drunk approximately 8-10 years after harvest but will almost always continue to age well for far longer.
Graham’s Malvedos Vintage Port presents the Graham’s style admirably, with its expressive floral characteristics and opulent blackberry fruit flavours. It is usually more approachable at a younger age than classic Vintage Port, therefore providing an excellent alternative while waiting for the latter to fully mature. Quinta dos Malvedos 1988 Vintage Port was the first ever Port (and in fact, the first ever Portuguese wine) to be ranked in the prestigious Wine Spectator’s annual ‘Top 100 Wines of the World'. It also won gold medals in two consecutive years at the London International Wine Challenge.
The consistency of quality of the wines from the Malvedos vineyard is such that in Vintage declarations they form the principal component of Graham’s classic Vintage Ports. In most intervening years, the wines from Malvedos merit bottling as standalone wines from a single vineyard: Graham’s Quinta dos Malvedos Vintage Port. As can often happen in the Douro, timely rain following a hot and dry summer can make all the difference and this is what happened in 2015. Charles Symington, in his round up of the vintage wrote: ‘The windows of opportunity couldn’t have been better for the duration of the vintage; the balanced yields of the Nacional and the final stages of maturation produced perfectly ripe and concentrated grapes with balanced sugar levels. The favourable conditions produced some of the finest Touriga Franca grapes in memory.’
Abundant rainfall at the start of the 2015 viticultural year contributed to the replenishment of soil water reserves and this was crucial due to the very dry winter, spring and summer
that followed. The period between the start of the vegetative cycle to the initial stages of the ripening season (March – July) was simultaneously the hottest and driest of the last 36 years. June and July were very hot but, significantly, August was relatively cool; most days being cooler than normal. The effects of the continuing drought were thus partially offset by these conditions. Cool nighttime temperatures proved decisive in preserving the natural acidity in the berries. The vintage started at Malvedos on September 10th but was soon halted with the arrival of a storm on the 15th which brought much needed rain, falling steadily and allowing it to be absorbed by the soil. The brief but generous rainfall was a real bonus helping the Touriga Nacional and the Touriga Franca to shine.