Port (or what is called Vinho Porto in Portugal) is a fortified wine exclusively from the Douro Valley in the northern provinces of Portugal. There are many other countries that produce fortified wine (Canada, the United States, France, Australia) but only wines from Portugal can be called Port.
Port is one of the best dessert wines around, it’s unique, robust, often woody body balances out the sweetness perfectly. Port wines are also versatile; in that they can be consumed at the end of the meal with dessert or at the beginning as an aperitif.
Obviously, Port has been coming from Portugal since 1756 so they know what they are doing. The port that they are producing is absolutely amazing. The Douro Region in Portugal is the third oldest protected wine region in the world, behind the Tokaj-Hegyalja Region in Hungary (1730) and the Chianti Region in Italy (1716).
There are many different styles of port. Some of them include:
- Tawny Port – Aged in wooden barrels that eventually oxidize the grapes and turns it into a golden-brown colour with a nutty flavour
- Ruby Port – the sweetest and most popular port. It is stored in stainless steel tanks so it has a deep red colour and does not improve with age
- Vintage Port – These ports are made from grapes that are from a specific vintage year that is specifically declared in the Douro region
Port should be stored in a cool, dark place because light can actually damage it. Most ports should be served between 15 and 20 degrees Celsius. Port wines that are unfiltered should be decanted to get out any sediment and also to allow the port to breathe.
Port is the best of the best of dessert wines. There is no substitute for a beautiful, fragrant, and flavourful port to go as an aperitif or with a great dessert!
The Home Vintner has kits available for you to make your own fortified wine:
- Selection Specialé Dessert Wine: this kit is available in our regular stock lineup all year! This Port style of kit makes a fantastic cellar Port somewhere between a Ruby and a Vintage style.
- Limited Release Chocolate Raspberry – Flavours of plum, cherry, raspberry, chocolate, vanilla, and coffee
- Limited Release Peppermint Mocha – Dark chocolate, cool peppermint, and coffee notes
- Limited Release Red Velvet – Rich and velvety notes of dark berry, sponge cake, and dark chocolate
Contact one of our stores to order your dessert wine kit today!