WINEMAKER: David Guimaraens.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION: Quinta do Panascal is a substantial Grade A property located in the heart of the Tavora valley, in the Cima Corgo region of the Douro. The Quinta undertook an ambitious planting programme from 1987-1995 and is now one of the largest Quintas in the Douro valley, producing top quality port.
A Quinta do Panascal Vintage port is produced only when a general Fonseca declaration is not made, as this wine forms the backbone of a Fonseca Vintage port blend. The decision to bottle a Quinta do Panascal vintage is taken when the wine is judged to be of exceptional quality. Like a Fonseca vintage port the wine spends two years ageing in wooden casks before being bottled. However, the wine is not released immediately after it is bottled but left to mature in Fonseca’s cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia until it is ready for drinking; normally ten years after the harvest.
NOTES ON VITICULTURAL YEAR AND HARVEST: The 2003/2004 winter was very dry, having only rained 1/3 of the quantity registered the previous winter. The lack of water during the early part of the growing season led to very little pressure from disease. Our concern in July was mainly one of doubting the vines capacity to ripen the grapes due to the drastic shortage of water.
The vintage stood out for the perfect weather conditions for the whole period. The young Ports show good structure with very fresh berry fruit aromas, resulting from the cooler than normal ripening period.
TASTING NOTES: A fat, plump, luscious wine. Full of rounded, ripe jammy fruit aromas. Almost warm ‘marmalada’ like note to the nose. The ripeness and richness of fruit is reinforced in the mouth with flavours of plump, bursting plums and cherries. Great notes of tobacco, smoky tea (lapsang) and spice. A warm, velvety, satiny wine. An enticingly very textural wine!