Symington declares 2016 Vintage Port

Rain encouraged some producers to pick early but it was a year to take risks, according to winemaker, Charles Symington (pictured) (Photo: Symington)

Port lovers rejoice! The Symington family have announced that they will produce a 2016 vintage port under their various labels, which include Graham’s, Cockburn’s, Dow’s, Warre’s and Quinta do Vesuvio. That is only the fourth declaration since 2000 and the first since 2011. In the last 44 years, Graham’s has declared a vintage port on average less than three times per decade.

“It is not easy in our incredibly diverse region to pick grapes at exactly the right time, especially when yields are amongst the lowest in the world.”

2016 was a wetter than average vintage, which balanced the hot Douro summer. Rain encouraged some producers to pick early but it was a year to take risks, according to winemaker Charles Symington who delayed the harvest until the grapes were physiologically ripe. It paid off. The weather cleared, and the grapes were picked without pressure.

“It is not easy in our incredibly diverse region to pick grapes at exactly the right time, especially when yields are amongst the lowest in the world at 26 hectolitres/ha, with high risk of dehydration and when many producers rely on bought grapes and are therefore dependent on farmers for picking.

All the 2016 Symington Vintage Ports are made from our own Quinta vineyards where the production team can be seen every day tasting and analysing grapes throughout August and September. All our Vintage Ports were made in our five small lagar wineries, using the classic treading method for great Port.”

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