Douro Primeira Prova 2019
The best Vintage Port ever?
Are the 2017 Vintage Ports going to be the best ever? Many winemakers think so.
The 2017 growing season was hot & dry, with historically scant rainfall. During summer, the Douro experienced protracted heat waves, particularly in June. Conditions were extraordinarily challenging, both for the grapevines and for the individuals who work on the steep & arid terraced hillsides.
As it turns out, the exceptional conditions in 2017 have given birth to outstanding Ports. Winegrowers and critics alike are more than a little enthusiastic about the quality, and are inclined to compare 2017’s Vintage Ports with the very best bottlings the Douro Valley has ever seen.
‘In my 25 years as a winemaker in our family vineyards, I have never seen a year like 2017. The yields were extremely low, but the concentration and structure took my breath away. We have made some really remarkable wines’. – Charles Symington
The fact that 2017 has been declared as a vintage year directly following 2016 (vintage as well), is a very rare occurrence, and only serves to underscore the magnificent quality of the Ports. The Symington family (Dow’s, Graham’s, Warre’s, Cockburn’s & more) reports that this is the very first time ever that they have made a back-to-back general declaration since Andrew James Symington arrived in Oporto in 1882.
‘2017 is clearly an exceptional year, which I believe will be remembered as one of the historic vintage Port declarations of Quinta do Noval’. – Christian Seely of Quinta do Noval
‘Even before harvesting, the grapes of this vintage looked perfect. It is a wine that will age forever’. – Dirk Niepoort
Great – but not just for Port
The harvest of the DOC wines took place in August, which is one of the earliest in the history of the Douro. Grape yields were down twenty per cent compared to the ten-year average. The wines are characterised by an exuberant ripeness, with remarkable aromatic intensity, profound fruit and strong velvety tannins. The Douro producers are comparing 2017 with the legendary 1945 vintage because of the similarities of its rainfall and temperature patterns to those of the vegetation cycle in 1945.
‘We made great, very seductive wines, Ports that are perhaps among the best we will ever see and Douro dry wines that are hugely enjoyable to taste now but clearly with immense ageing potential’. – Carlos Agrellos of Quinta da Romaneira
The 2017 harvest of the DOC wines took place in August, which is one of the earliest in the history of the Douro. Photo © Duorum
In the Douro Valley, the grapes get traditionally stomped by foot in Lagares (large stone tanks). Photo © Quinta do Noval
A fantastic lineup
The event Douro Primeira Prova 2019 now offers an opportunity to taste a marvellous lineup of wines from this outstanding vintage. Red wines and Ports of 2017 from the twenty-six leading producers in the Douro will be presented from 3–5 June 2019 at an elite tasting event, open to professionals only, at Museu do Douro in Peso da Régua. Here, 150 wines can be sampled and evaluated in the format of a ‘silent tasting’ just before they are released. Along with the 2017 reds and ports, the estates will also be showing their whites, rosés & sparkling wines from 2018.
Fifty tasting places will be available over the course of three days in a total of six slots, each day from 9.00–12.00 & 13.00–16.00 hrs.
Book your tasting slots now:
Please indicate your name, company, e-mail address, mobile phone number and desired day(s) and time slot(s).
Make sure you book your accommodation as soon as possible – the Douro is an extremely popular travel destination in early summer! Find accommodation options here.
The Douro Primeira Prova will take place at the Museu do Douro in Peso da Régua, which is located approximately 100 km east of Porto. | Map © Google Maps
The New Douro Wineries:
Casa Ferreirinha (Sogrape Vinhos) / Duas Quintas (Ramos Pinto) / Duorum Vinhos/ Lavradores de Feitoria / Poeira / Niepoort / Nova Quinta do Sagrado / Poças / Quinta da Boavista + Quinta das Tecedeiras / Quinta da Gaivosa (Alves de Sousa) / Quinta de São José / Quinta de la Rosa / Quinta do Crasto + Roquette&Cazes / Quinta do Noval / Quinta do Pessegueiro / Quinta da Romaneira / Quinta do Vallado / Quinta dos Murças/ Quinta Nova / Quinta Vale D. Maria / Quinta do Vale Meão / Real Companhia Velha / Symington /Prats & Symington / Vertice / Wine&Soul
Book your tasting slots now!
The Douro Primeira Prova will be showcasing 26 wineries and their most recent vintages. 150 wines can be tasted and scored in the form of a ’silent tasting‘ in slots from 9-12 and from 13-16 hrs. each day.
Tel.: +43 1 369 79 900
Douro Primeira Prova Venue
Museu do Douro
Rua Marquês de Pombal
5050-282 Peso da Régua, Portugal
In order to tell the tale of ‘The New Douro’, one must first cast a glance back at the history of ‘The Old Douro’. Port has been produced there for more than 300 years, but the production of still wines first picked up momentum after the end of the Second World War. The winegrowers’ group ‘The New Douro’ came to life in 2004, thanks to Paul Symington, Dirk Niepoort and Cristiano van Zeller, with the goal of promoting still wines from the Douro Valley. This was seen as a paradigm-shift at a time when a new generation of young growers took the helm from their elders, and recognised in one another the opportunity for creating and developing synergy (rather than indulging in rivalry), in order to achieve a common goal – making first-rate still wines in the Douro! Thus, with ‘The New Douro’, a new era began in the long and storied history of the region’s wine trade.