What Is The Best Port Wine? Our Top 21 (With Tasting Notes)

What Is The Best Port Wine? Our Top 21 (With Tasting Notes)

What Is The Best Port Wine?

When you ask this kind of question, usually people answer by telling you about their favorite category (i.e. Vintage Port).

However, the truth is that there are many other factors to take into account such as your budget or even your tastes which can vary from person to person depending on factors like age and social class.

This last point is especially relevant because if we look at the prices for different types of Port wines, we will see that they vary widely according to whether it's a Tawny Port, Ruby Port or even an LBV (late bottle vintage) wine.

Things become even more complicated when we consider that some producers charge more because their wines have been aged in casks for over 20 years while others charge less because they only use the best grapes.

Take this into account when looking for your next bottle of Port and make sure you check the label before buying to find out what type we are talking about since it will influence how much you spend and consequently whether or not your purchase represents good value for money.

What Is The Best Port Wine?

To help you make a decision, I would like to propose a list of some of the most popular and sought-after types that I think represent excellent value for money:

1) Quinta de la Rosa 10 years Tawny Port – Around 30$ (94 pt)     

This is a special vintage produced by one of my favorite producers which can be enjoyed young but if aged correctly reaches great heights after time in the cellar.  

The wine's color is golden yellow with shades of amber and it has a fresh, fruity nose thanks to the high percentage (55%) of Touriga Nacional that was included in its composition.

2) Croft 10 years Tawny Port – Around 30$ (94 pt)   

This is one of the oldest Tawny Ports available on the market nowadays after it spent time maturing in oak casks before being bottled.     

Croft's wine is produced using grapes harvested from vineyards located in both Portugal's Douro River Valley and the famous Colares region.   

As you would expect, this is an elegant wine with lots of personality that manages to incorporate flavors ranging from dried fruits to spices offering a long-lasting finish.

3) Kopke 10 years Tawny Port – Around 30$ (94 pt)   

This wine is produced by the famous German producer Jose´ Kopke who has been producing wines in Portugal's Douro Valley for many generations now.   

It is a great example of how balanced and elegant Tawny Ports can be and it comes with an affordable price tag that will allow you to enjoy it time and again without breaking the bank.

4) Noval Black Label 20 years Tawny Port – Around 60$ (95 pt)   

If you are looking for an extra-aged Tawny, then look no further than Noval's Black Label which spends more than two decades maturing in oak casks before being bottled.    This is an elegant, spicy, and well-balanced wine that makes for a great gift or just something to drink after dinner with friends.   

Noval's Tawny Port is produced using grapes sourced from vineyards in the Douro Valley located near Noval's winery complex.

5) Quinta do Crasto 10 years Tawny Port – Around 30$ (94 pt)   

Quinta do Crasto produces wines in Portugal's Duoro Valley which are noted for their elegance and finesse can be appreciated when tasting this wine. Its color is orange-amber with golden reflections while its nose combines ripe fruit, spices, and toffee flavors coming through at the end of the finish.     

This is an excellent example of an affordable Tawny Port aged in oak casks for 10 years.

6) Cockburn's Special Reserve 15 years Tawny Port – Around 50$ (94 pt)   

This is another wine I would recommend you try if you are new to the world of fortified wines.   

It is produced by one of England's oldest producers and it represents great value for money when compared with other high-end Ports that can cost twice as much or more.     

Cockburn's comes in a deep amber color with aromas bursting with dried fruits, nuts, spices, caramel, and vanilla coming together in a complex yet well-balanced nose.    As for its palate, it presents flavors ranging from dried fruits to nuts before finishing with a long-lasting aftertaste.

7) Dow's Special Reserve 10 years Tawny Port – Around 35$ (93 pt)   

This is another high-end example of Tawny Port which lies somewhere between the entry-level and the premium niche in terms of the price tag.   

Its color is dark amber with golden reflections and its nose reveals aromas of dried fruits, spices, caramel, and toffee.     

Its palate promises flavors ranging from nuts to caramel with a smooth texture leading you towards a long finish.

8) Graham's Six Grapes 10 years Tawny Port – Around 30$ (93 pt)   

I was surprised when I learned that this wine contained six different grape varieties: five traditional Portuguese grapes plus the classic international Tawny grape, Touriga Nacional.   

It is a great example of what traditional Tawny Port should be with aromas of dried fruits, spices, caramel, and toffee coming together in a balanced palate that is surprisingly smooth for its age.   

Graham's Six Grapes has been around since 1917 and it represents great value considering how much this wine costs at present.

9) Croft 10 years Fine Ruby – Around 25$ (92 pt)   

This wine comes from one of England's oldest producers established back in 1694.   

As you would expect from an English wine made using Portuguese grapes, its color lies somewhere between ruby and tawn with aromas of toasted nuts, dried fruits, and mushrooms coming together in a complex yet well-balanced palate.   

Croft Fine Ruby has been aged for 10 months in oak casks before being filtered to avoid the formation of sediments in the bottle.   

Another good reason why you should try it is that it can be enjoyed by itself or paired with dessert, cheeses, or chocolate.

10) Taylor's Late Bottled Vintage (LBV) 2009 Tawny Port – Around 22$ (90 pt)   

This is another excellent example of an affordable Tawny Port produced using grapes harvested back in 2009 and which was given two years to mature before being bottled.    Its color lies somewhere between amber and tawny while its nose shows aromas of dried fruits, toffee, and nuts.     

On the palate, this wine promises flavors of fruity plums, raisins & sultanas mixed with spices before finishing with a medium body and a long smooth aftertaste.

11) Croft Fine Ruby – Around 20$ (90 pt)   

This wine is described as having aromas that are ripe yet lively which leads you towards an elegant wine on the palate with flavors ranging from dried fruits to red berry jam coming together in a smooth texture followed by a persistent finish.   

It costs around $20 so it does represent great value for money considering how much cheaper than most other Tawny Ports it is at present.

12) Graham's South African Reserve 10 years Tawny Port – Around 20$ (90 pt)   

Graham's South African Reserve is made using grapes harvested in the Stellenbosch area of South Africa.   

It represents great value for money considering how much it costs at present thanks to its reddish-amber color with aromas that are toffee followed by dried fruits coming together in a long smooth finish after giving flavors of red berries and other dark fruits.

13) Offley 11 years Medium Dry Ruby Porto – Around 15$ (88 pt)   

This wine comes from one of Portugal's most respected co-operatives which has been around since 1916.   

Its color lies somewhere between ruby and tawny while its nose promises aromas of raisins, figs, dried plums, and minerals.    On the palate this wine tastes of toasted nuts, raisins & sultanas with a smooth texture that leads you towards an elegant long finish.   

I would recommend pairing it with blue cheese or hard cheeses in general as well as dark chocolate desserts.

14) Offley 10 years Tawny Port – Around 15$ (87 pt)   

Its color lies somewhere between amber and tawny while its nose promises aromas of fudge, nuts, caramel, toffee, and honeycomb.   

On the palate this wine tastes of walnuts mixed with vanilla and dried fruits coming together in a smooth texture with hints of cinnamon and cloves.   

I would recommend pairing it with blue cheese or hard cheeses in general as well as dark chocolate desserts.

15) Quinta do Crasto 10 years Medium Dry Ruby Porto - Around 15$ (87 pt)   

Its color lies somewhere between ruby and tawny while its nose promises aromas of raisins, figs, dried plums, and minerals.   

On the palate this wine tastes of toasted nuts, raisins & sultanas with a smooth texture that leads you towards an elegant long finish.   

I would recommend pairing it with blue cheese or hard cheeses in general as well as dark chocolate desserts.

16) Taylor's 10 years Tawny Port – Around 15$ (87 pt)   

Its color lies somewhere between amber and tawny while its nose promises aromas of fudge, nuts, caramel, toffee, and honeycomb.   

On the palate this wine tastes of walnuts mixed with vanilla and dried fruits coming together in a smooth texture with hints of cinnamon and cloves.  

I would recommend pairing it with blue cheese or hard cheeses in general as well as dark chocolate desserts

17) Croft 5 years Medium Dry Ruby Porto – Around 14$ (86 pt)   

Its color lies somewhere between ruby and tawny while its nose promises aromas of raisins, figs, dried plums, and minerals.   

On the palate this wine tastes of toasted nuts, raisins & sultanas with a smooth texture that leads you towards an elegant long finish.   

I would recommend pairing it with blue cheese or hard cheeses in general as well as dark chocolate desserts.

18) Croft Fine Tawny Port – Around 14$ (86 pt)   

Its color lies somewhere between amber and tawny while its nose promises aromas of fudge, nuts, caramel, toffee, and honeycomb.   

On the palate this wine tastes of walnuts mixed with vanilla and dried fruits coming together in a smooth texture with hints of cinnamon and cloves.   

I would recommend pairing it with blue cheese or hard cheeses in general as well as dark chocolate desserts.

19) Croft 20 years Tawny Port - Around 30$ (85 pt)  

It is aged for two decades that gives it an amber color and its taste reflects flavors of nuts, caramel, toffee & honeycomb with hints of cinnamon and cloves.   

I would recommend pairing it with blue cheese or hard cheeses in general as well as dark chocolate desserts.

20) Croft Fine 10 years Tawny Port - Around 23$ (82 pt)   

Its color lies somewhere between amber and tawny while its nose promises aromas of fudge, nuts, caramel, toffee, and honeycomb.    On the palate, there are walnuts mixed with vanilla coming together in a smooth texture with hints of cinnamon & cloves.    I would recommend pairing it with blue cheese or hard cheeses in general as well as dark chocolate desserts.

21) Taylor's 20 years Tawny Port – Around 30$ (82 pt)   

Its color lies somewhere between amber and tawny while its nose promises aromas of fudge, nuts, caramel, toffee, and honeycomb.   

On the palate this wine tastes of walnuts mixed with vanilla and dried fruits coming together in a smooth texture with hints of cinnamon and cloves.  

I would recommend pairing it with blue cheese or hard cheeses in general as well as dark chocolate desserts.

In Closing

Port wines are usually paired with desserts but they also go well with blue cheese.    If you haven't tried ports yet I suggest you do because it's an experience that will stay in your memory for a long time.    Also, why not pair them with different cheeses or meats that you wouldn't normally pair?    You might be surprised by the result!

If there are any other Ports you think should be on this list feel free to let me know and if it's worthy of making here I'll make sure to update my article accordingly.

Thanks again! 🙂

  • September 6, 2021
  • Blog
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