The grapes for Taylor Fladgate’s 1863 port were picked the year Henry Ford and William Randolph Hearst were born and the Battle of Gettysburg took place. It was a stellar year in the Douro Valley (the last great port harvest before the spread of phylloxera). During the 150 years since, much of the port has evaporated through the two barrels it was aged in, but what remains is hedonistically beautiful, with rich, layered aromas, complex and persistent flavours, and a texture that’s at once creamy but balanced by crisp acidity. The first bottle of Taylor Fladgate’s 1863 port was released in Hong Kong in May, but a small number of crystal decanters are now available in Canada—at about $4,000 each.
December 12, 2014