Noval’s 40 year old tawny is made from hand-harvested, foot trodden grapes. The wine is given the best spirit for fortification. The wine is 100% Touriga Nacional. It is a blend of aged Ports that average out to be 40 years old. They are put together to show the house style of complexity and concentration.
“This is very flattering up front, with a lush wave of warm date, fig and toffee leading the way, backed by subtle bitter almond and Brazil nut notes that add spine and contrast. A flash of green tea pierces the finish, adding a dry hint in turn and bringing you back for more. A wine with power that is also invigorating to drink. Drink now. 40 cases imported.” 96 points, James Molesworth, Wine Spectator, 30 June 2018
One of the most celebrated producers in Oporto. Their top wines are great, expensive and hard to come by. Thankfully, their entry level stuff is pretty smart too. They are famous for pioneering the ‘late bottled’ style Ports which are so famous in the current climate. Noval are also able to brag that all of their products are single ‘Quinta’ or vineyard which they have strict control over. To this day the grapes are hand picked and foot crushed. Aside from their outstanding Ports, Noval also make wonderful table wines from the native grapes of the region.
Port is a style of wine but also the name of the region that sits on the terraced hills that over look the River Douro. They are most famous for the barrel aged red grape based fortified wines that can be aged for 50 years depending on style. The grapes used are the native Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinta Barroca, Tinta Cão and Tinta Roriz (Tempranillo). White Port is also seen around but not lauded like the Red styles and don’t age. The Douro is capable of making some stylish and modern reds and whites too.
The fortified red wine is aged in barrel and allowed to slowly oxidise. This is how it gains the tawny colour and nutty or rancio flavours. They are almost always blends of vintages and tend to be ready to drink on release. The wine must be at least two years old before release but can be labelled 10, 20, 30 or over 40 years old.
Touriga Nacional is the most desirable for quality Port but proves difficult to grow and offers small yields. Touriga Franca makes up the greatest percentage of plantings and can be seen as the Cabernet Franc compared to Nacionals Cabernet Sauvignon. Tinta Barroca can withstand the cool conditions on the North facing slopes, Tinta Cão offers finesse and complexity and Tinta Roriz aka Tempranillo offers its own perfume and charm.