Quinta do Noval 2016
Quinta do Noval vintage port is characterised by its purity of fruit and a fine and delicate quality that is typical of the wines of the property but which finds its most remarkable and enduring expression in the vintage ports. These are declared in the years when the wines, sometimes from just a small parcel of vines, show exceptional quality and come up to Noval’s exacting standards. Even then, the wines selected for the Quinta do Noval vintage blend represent only a small proportion of the total production, this year being just 12.5% of total.
Despite the reduction in yields, the harvest was of an extremely high quality. Remarkable when you bear in mind the tough growing conditions of 2016. The start of the growing cycle was damp and wet, however, this was much needed after the near drought of 2015. Luckily this replenished the water reserves in readiness for what was to come in July: very hot and dry conditions. In some places close to Noval in Pinhao, temperatures reached the dizzy heights of 43 degrees centigrade! This heat brought many challenges with some parcels, the vines began to slow growth and almost shut down. Relief was once again brought by two spells of rain on the 25th & 26th August and 12th & 13th September, saving the acidity levels from plummeting below healthy levels. Thus, the 2016 vintage is remarkably fresh, poised and well balanced.
A classically complex Noval showing ripe, fresh dark fruits alongside touches of raisins, prunes and dates supported by a backbone of chocolate and vanilla. In addition, this wine has a lovely savoury edge; leather & suede with a real meatiness of both structure and flavour. The tannins are ripe and smooth with a full, spirity finish. Powerful, elegant, rounded and complete. Delightful from such a rare and remarkable vintage.