As always this 100% single-quinta wine is drawn from Noval’s own vines. There are three core parcels, all near the winery—the terraces directly surrounding the winery in Pinhão, the vines in the Roncão Valley and a parcel overlooking the Douro River. Each year, the blending proportions for the Vintage Port will vary depending on the vagaries of the vineyard.
THE SUPREME EXPRESSION OF THE TERROIR OF QUINTA DO NOVAL
Quinta do Noval Vintage Port is characterised by its purity of fruit and a fine, delicate quality that is typical of the wines of the property in general, but which finds its most remarkable and enduring expression in the Vintage Ports. Equilibrium, harmony, finesse and elegance characterise our great Vintage Ports, which are declared only when we are certain that the year has produced a blend, however small, that is worthy of bearing the name of Quinta do Noval Vintage Port.
Noval follows its own path in its approach to Vintage Port. If we believe that we have wines of the quality and personality to join the ranks of the Quinta do Noval Vintage Ports of previous years, we will bottle it and declare it, even if this means declaring several years in a row, and even if it means, as is often the case, bottling only a few hundred cases of Quinta do Noval Vintage Port, representing a tiny percentage of the total production of the Quinta.
Of course, in very great years, when there is unanimity among Port producers, and a General Declaration results, Quinta do Noval will declare its wine also, and perhaps with a little more wine than usual. But whatever the year, the standards of selection in the Noval tasting room are extremely rigorous, and even in the more generous years volumes of our Vintage Ports are always extremely small: at the very most, less than 20% of the production of our great vineyard terroir.
"The 2011 Vintage Port is a blend of 60& Touriga Nacional, 30% Touriga Francesa and 10% Tinto Cão, all aged for 18 months in wood. It comes in at 101.2 grams per liter of residual sugar. It opens with understatement, but that doesn't last long. Showing pure power on the finish, this otherwise elegant Noval (especially refined in the mid-palate) shows itself to be in fine form as it airs out. Pointed, graceful and a bit drying, this is built for the long haul. It's a Port you need to cellar. It will one day gain complexity, open more fully and become more interesting. That day is not today, although if you air it out long enough, the fine fruit and flavor eventually come through. By the end of the week, this was actually possible to drink, although even then, as it sat in the glass, it became tighter and slightly astringent--showing off its power and intensity. Its firmness and underlying concentration are beautifully matched by the fruit, though. The balance is impeccable. If you have some old school patience, snap this up by the case. It may be accessible younger than I suggest, but this is a Port that should be put away for a couple of decades, or more, for best results."
97 Points Wine Advocate
2011 Vintage Port Declaration: All of the major port houses have now declared the 2011 vintage as being of exceptional quality. For many shippers this is the first declaration since 2007. The avalanche of declarations started with Sogrape, owners of Sandeman and Ferriera. This has been followed by Symington, the company that owns Dows, Graham Warre and Cockburn and Taylor Fladgate owners of the Fonseca and Taylors brands