Subscriber login Close [x]
remember me
You are not logged in.


Published:  23 July, 2008

The Symington Family Port Company has become the first producer to reveal officially one of the wine world's worst-kept secrets, by declaring the 2003 Port vintage for every house in its portfolio.

The 2003 viticultural year was particularly favourable in the Douro, with heavy winter rainfall followed by a hot and dry summer,' the company said in a statement. August was hot, but not the excessive heat suffered by other parts of Europe. Rain at the end of August played a key role in preparing the grapes for harvesting. Picking took place in perfect weather and outstanding wines were made that will take their place among the classic Vintage Ports of recent decades.'

According to Portuguese specialist Raymond Reynolds, Niepoort and Quinta do Vale Meao have also declared, and the rest of the Port trade is likely to follow over the next few weeks.

The news of the declaration will come as a fillip to the region's generic body, the IVDP, as it launches its strategy for 2005. The body said it would be looking to work closely with independent, mail-order, and multiple specialists to highlight Port in-store and reach the consumer at the point of purchase'. The campaign will once again be handled by Westbury Communications.

Delaforce, part of the Fladgate Partnership, has brought in WSA chairman and descendant of the Port house's founders, Joanna Delaforce, as a consultant. Among Delaforce's task will be to help with the launch of the brand's new packaging, which is released next month.

My grandfather, Victor Delaforce, who inspired my love of Port and taught me to taste from the early age of eight, would be delighted,' she said.