2009 Taylor Vargelles Vinha Velha
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- 98 Mark Squires - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
98 Mark Squires - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2009 Quinta de Vargellas Vinha Velha Vintage Port is a typical field blend aged in used French oak vats. It comes in with 98 grams per liter of residual sugar. One of the fleshiest wines in the vertical—from a very warm year—this has plenty of power and fine depth, hallmarks of the vintage. This was not always received as well as some lusher vintages, but it was likely also far more closed when young. This is a relative powerhouse even now, stern and dramatically different than the lusher and sexier 2007, for instance. For me, always obsessed with structure, it rings the bell. Laced with herbs and dried fruits, this is mightily impressive on its own terms, though. It adds a long finish, but it shows no trace of maturity anytime in the near future. The fruit is sappy but very dry. For all of its power, it retains some elegance, and it is vaguely approachable. The key word there is "vaguely." Do you want to enjoy it or just fight off the tannins? This is another brilliant Vinha Velha, even if often underrated, probably thanks to its somewhat brooding demeanor. Even now, it is a relatively backward one that needs much more time to express itself. Drink it if you must now, but you'll probably regret it.