Fonseca 2017

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Tasting Notes

Quinta do Panascal was the first Fonseca property to start picking on 6 September. The two Pinhão Valley estates, Cruzeiro and Santo António, followed on 10 and 17 September – the earliest picking dates in a generation. Touriga Nacional , Touriga Francesa , Tinto Cão , Tinta Roriz , Tinta Barroca. TA 4.1 g/l, pH 3.9, RS 98 g/l. 8,100 bottles. Deepest purple. Wild, perfectly ripe small black berries like elderberry but also the lush sweetness of ripe blackberries plus a stony, rocky edge and just a touch charry. Lush, plush and exotic on the palate, deep-pile, compact, smooth tannins, just enough freshness to balance the rich generosity. The finish is beautifully dry-tasting, the tannins melting on the long finish.

Score: 17+

Julia Harding MW, JancisRobinson.com Maturity: 2027-2057 04 June 2019

Picking began at Quinta do Panascal on September 6, the two other quintas in Pinhão that form the 2017 Fonseca Vintage Port, Cruzeiro and Santo António picked on 10 and 17 September respectively. One of the deepest, most opaque color amongst the new Port alumni, it has one of the most backward, almost recalcitrant noses that demands a lot of aeration. It gradually opens to reveal blackberry, melted tar, thyme, clove and violet aromas that are well defined, if maybe just missing the same breeding as Taylor’s. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin. This is fresh and detailed, a slightly more structured Fonseca than expected, quite strict at first with good grip and a lightly spiced, precise finish. Powerful and long on the aftertaste, you can feel this Fonseca 60 seconds after the wine has exited. It deserves 10-15 years in bottle. Excellent, but patience required. The most enigmatic of the 2017 Vintage Ports. Total production is 8,100 cases.

Score: 95

Neal Martin, Vinous.com Maturity: 2033-2080 01 June 2019