“I think that Port needs to have different products,” says Dirk Van der Niepoort, a 5th generation Port producer. “It makes it exciting.” Indeed, Dirk’s firm is creating a wide range of tantalizing wines, from Redoma, Niepoort’s dry table wine, to delicate Vintage Colheitas.
150 Years of Winemaking: Niepoort’s story begins in 1842, when Dutchman Eduard Kebe famed Douro winemaking region of Portugal. When he passed away in 1848, the business was left in the capable hands of his business partner, F.M. Van der Niepoort. Over a hundred and fifty years later, Dirk Niepoort continues to make fortified wines using the same methods as his ancestors, while drawing on his contemporary education, including a year and a half spent at Napa Valley’s Cuvaison winery.
Critically Acclaimed: The critics agree, saying “the typical Niepoort vintage Port is an explosion of intensely concentrated grape and raspberry flavors …Its compact tannin structure is a focused masterpiece with superb intensity of flavors.”-James Suckling, Wine Spectator
History of Port and its Relation to Niepoort: Port wine (also known as Vinho do Porto, Porto, and often simply port) is a Portuguese fortified wine produced exclusively in the Douro Valley in the northern provinces of Portugal. It is typically a sweet, red wine, often served as a dessert wine, though it also comes in dry, semi-dry, and white varieties. Fortified wines in the style of port are also produced outside Portugal, most notably in Australia, South Africa, Canada, India, Argentina, and the United States. Under European Union Protected Designation of Origin guidelines, only the product from Portugal may be labeled as port or Porto. Port is produced from grapes grown and processed in the demarcated Douro region. The wine produced is then fortified by the addition of a neutral grape spirit known as aguardente, in order to stop the fermentation, leaving residual sugar in the wine, and to boost the alcohol content. The fortification spirit is sometimes referred to as brandy but it bears little resemblance to commercial brandies.
Niepoort tawny, with an average age of three and a half years, originates from low yielding vineyards in the Cima corgo region of the Douro Valley. The grapes are predominantly trodden in lagares, prior to ageing in small old oak casks at their lodges in Vila Nova de Gaia.
Varietals: Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinto Cao, Tinta Francisca, Tinata Amarela and Tinta Roriz
Alcohol: 20.0% by volume
Tasting Notes: Brick red in color, with delicate nutty aromas and a hint of dried fruits. On the palate, very well balanced with a youthful fruity, luscious character, which integrates well with a long spirity finish.
Food Pairings: Enjoy this tawny with salty cheese and nuts! Drink as an aperitif or an after dinner drink.
Jim Lutfy’s thoughts: “Port with maturity and class. Loaded with elegance and flavor with many layers of complexity. A complete wine…BRAVO to Niepoort!”-JL