Taylor Fladgate were pioneers of the LBV category, developed to satisfy the demand for a high quality ready-to-drink alternative to Vintage Port for everyday consumption. Unlike Vintage Port, which is bottled after only two years in wood and ages in bottle, LBV is bottled after four to six years and is ready to drink when bottled. Taylor Fladgate continues to lead the LBV category of Port worldwide, in spite of the fact that many other shippers now also produce an LBV.
The wines used to blend Taylor Fladgate LBV were drawn from a reserve of some of the best full bodied red Ports, produced at the 2014 harvest, from grapes grown on Taylor’s own vineyards and on other top properties in the Cima Corgo and Douro Superior areas.
Vivid ruby coloured rim around a deep purple black centre. On the nose, the first impression is of brambly woodland berries and rich, jammy aromas of blackcurrant. Around this dense core of ripe dark berry fruit are leafy scents of mint and wild herbs, a subtle spiciness and fleeting cedary notes of cigar box. The palate is underpinned by firm, linear tannins and lifted by a lively acidity. Thick, luscious cassis flavours blend with raspberry and apricot and carry through into the very long finish. An archetypal Taylor Fladgate Late Bottled Vintage, elegant and restrained, with great quality and purity of fruit.
NOTES ON VITICULTURAL YEAR AND HARVEST
The cycle started with a wet and warm Spring, resulting in strong vegetative growth. Bud burst and flowering took place in optimal conditions. The Spring rainfall and a relatively cool June and July meant that the ripening season started with abundant water reserves in the soil and very healthy leaf canopies, leading to a very even and complete maturation of the crop. Hot weather in early September, followed by a brief spell of rainfall, rounded off the ripening. Picking at the 2014 harvest at Taylor Fladgate’s Quinta de Vargellas started relatively early on 8th September. The early start meant that the best grapes had been picked and were under cover by the time that heavy rain began to fall on the 21st. The grapes were reported to be very healthy and the wines as having excellent phenolic ripeness, sugar levels and colour.