RKS Wine: Porthead Alert! Warre’s Warrior Finest Reserve Port

Attending Port Wine Day years ago in Porto in Portugal I recall a French marketing guru saying Port is a luxury product at a discount price. I couldn’t think of a more appropriate description. Why is this so? I think Portheads are less in abundance than Potheads and given there are now more cannabis stores in Toronto than Liquor Stores perhaps that truism is staring us in the face.

So what about this Warrior Port? Who are the Portuguese attacking here? Perhaps your tastebuds?

An intense black cherry colour. A massive nose of blueberry and blackberry assaulting your olfactory senses like a tidal wave taking no hostages. You will never get this intensity in a red table wine. On the palate this is a Ferrari of a wine unless we are back to “Ford vs. Ferrari” in which case we might say a “Ford of a Wine” however given the state of Ford vehicles these days that would be an inappropriate statement! I wonder if Matt Damon drinks Port?

Sorry for veering off the racetrack but on the palate a huge wallop of “spirit infused” grape and not the spirit fortifying the Port but the spirit of the dedicated wine making team that put this gem together. For excellence and intensity, the Warrior can only lead to one conclusion that it is out to capture your tastebuds.

Yes a decade ago I was one of those wine drinkers who really never gave much thought to Port until in 2013 I was invited to Portugal to taste this magical liquid and well the rest is history. I am now a knight in the Confrairia do Vinho do Porto. Yes that is the Order of Port Brotherhood. Unfortunately I have yet to find the right castle in Portugal. But I am working on it!

Now as legend goes consume Port with old gizzards in the club with a cigar and blue cheese. I dislike blue cheese although I am an old man who loves freshly rolled Cohibas which I simply can’t find in Toronto so I say based on the wonderful people from Sogrape in Portugal who took me to the restaurant at the Bolsa (old Stock Exchange) in Porto for rare Portuguese ox with Port and let me tell you forget the blue cheese and cigars and pair this with a rare Prime Rib! Little did I suspect I would be enthroned as a knight in the Confrairia at the Bolsa a few years later! My job is to uphold the dignity of Port. Easy Peasy here my friends. I have had a 125-year-old Port which still had decades to go. I would say if you like Port this will last into 2035 with ease. Given I am an old man I have been building a Port corner in my wine cellar for my children and grandchildren.

Please don’t be like me and wait too long to appreciate Port. The English upper classes used to buy “pipes of Port” for their grandchildren to consume when they reached the age of majority. I am up to 40 bottles ready for future progeny. Should I be sad about this? No. My duty as a knight in the Confrairia will hopefully be passed on to the budding future generations as I lie in the special section of heaven allotted for the knights that lived and supported Port.

(Warre’s Warrior Port Finest Reserve, Symington Family Estates, Villa Nova Gaia, Portugal, $19.95, Liquor Control Board of Ontario # 197202, 750 mL, 20%, Robert K. Stephen a Little Birdie Told Me So Rating 94/100).

Published by Robert K Stephen (CSW)

Robert K Stephen writes about food and drink, travel, and lifestyle issues. He is one of the few non-national writers to be certified as a wine specialist by the Society of Wine Educators, in Washington, DC. Robert was the first associate member of the Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada. He also holds a Mindfulness Certification from the University of Leiden and the University of Toronto. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he has established this publication. His motto is, "Have Story, Will Write."

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