x
  • Country ranking ?

    41
  • Producer ranking ?

    10
  • Decanting time

    2h
  • When to drink

    Now

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The Story

W & J Graham & Co proudly marked the 60th anniversary of the Queen's accession to the throne with a commemorative bottling of Graham's 1952 Old Tawny Port.

Given its ability to age over very long periods, Port has always been a wine associated with longevity. In 2011 W & J Graham & Co, together with Berry Bros & Rudd, took the decision that this exceptional Port should be bottled to honour the Queen in her Diamond Jubilee Year.

For six decades, this Port has gently aged in seasoned oak casks, quietly bearing witness to Her Majesty's enduring reign. Generations of Graham's winemakers have accompanied the development of this venerable wine, regularly checking and assuring its progress on the long journey towards an ideal stage of refinement.

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Vintage 1963

Declared by all the major Port houses, 1963 was a monumental vintage against which many others are now judged. Power, dimension and real character are all hallmarks of this most memorable vintage. And even after more than 45 years the best wines never fail to impress with their essential three components of fruit, tannin and elegance. 1963s almost always appear to be younger than they really are.

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Latest Pro-tasting notes

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Written Notes

Shown to contrast with the 1963 vintage. Aged for over half a century in seasoned oak casks with an average age of 75 years that have been maintained by Graham’s own team of eight coopers. Just being launched now. See picture of the relative colours of the vintage and single harvest tawny 1963s.
Charles admits it’s difficult to say which he prefers (vintage or tawny); I think I prefer the old tawny. Firm finish, very fresh and lively. Some light astringency on the end. Less sweet and smooth than the vintage wine but very powerful. Very long indeed. Very sweet start and then a dry, fresh finish. Lots of freshness.

  • 98p

The 1963 Single Harvest Tawny Port, not yet bottled when seen and set for release in 2019, is a field blend that comes in with 127 grams of residual sugar. A very different wine stylistically than the overachieving 1994, this isn't as rich in a way, but it has a few cards up its sleeve. It adds more of that wonderful complexity that great old Tawnies acquire—molasses, dark chocolate, seared caramel. It's rather fresh for the age too. It has plenty of power and fine acidity supporting the fruit as well. This is pretty beautiful. It will last indefinitely, barring cork failure. The price was not set yet.

Part of the Symington Family houses, Graham's was declared this year, along with everything else. All of them were bottled, although not long in bottle. They are set for release in October 2018.

Charles Symington said that 2016 started off very rainy, followed by a hot and dry summer, but with moderate temperatures. It was fairly apparent it would be a later vintage. In mid-August, some rain helped the maturation. At the beginning of September, there was a wave of hot weather. He said that was a crucial moment when he thought of starting harvest, even though it was not quite perfect, but they waited. Victory goes to the bold. Rain in the second week of September caused them to hold back another week, beginning harvest around 22 September. It was a very late harvest, creating a certain element of risk. Touriga Franca, he said, is particularly susceptible to rain. But there was no rain for the next 30 days, making harvest easy. Charles said that the "blue skies and mild temperatures from the 13th September to the 10th October allowed for the Nacional to be picked in late September and the Franca in early October in perfect conditions with fantastic balance.

The freshness coming through in these wines being a defining feature of this vintage." As we debate the trends in Ports (see, last year's article on the 2015s, "Undeclared and Unashamed"), it's worth noting that my favorites of the Symington group are easily the single-plot Ports—The Stone Terraces and Capela, both are wine-of-the-vintage candidates. Dow's and Graham's did well, but I think the single-plot wines overshadow them rather easily.

  • 96p

Cask 9 bottle 209, bottled 2018. Amber, golden rim. Floral, scented, dried fruits, nuanced, layered, detailed, stunning nose.nuts and nut cake. Fresh acidity, elegant texture, detailed, nuanced, superb balance, dried fruits and nuts, layered, long. 98

  • 98p
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Information

Origin

Porto, Douro

Other wines from this producer

10 Year Old Tawny Port

20 Years Old Tawny

30 Years Old Tawny

40 Years Old Tawny

Blend No 5

Ne-Oublie Very Old Tawny Port

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The Stone Terraces Vintage Por

The Stone Terraces Vintage Port

Vargellas Vinha Velha Vintage Port

Vintage Port

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