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From the legendary 1840, Fonseca's first Vintage Port release, to the superb declared vintages of the last decade, the house has produced a succession of highly acclaimed wines even in the most adverse moments of history.
This consistency derives not only from continuity of family involvement, and the knowledge and skill passed down from one generation to the next, but also a close link with the vineyard. The firm's three estates of Cruzeiro, Panascal and Santo António are the heart of the distinctive character of Fonseca's Vintage Ports.
Fonseca's respect for the vineyard and the unique environment of the Douro Valley expresses itself in the firm's leadership in the field of sustainable and organic viticulture. It was the first house to offer a Port made entirely from organically produced grapes.
As it approaches its bicentenary, Fonseca can take pride in its past and look forward to the future with confidence. Wine drinkers increasingly seek wines of authenticity and character with a genuine story to tell and made by creative winemakers who understand their terroir and respect the environment.
Perhaps more than any other Port house, Fonseca has built a loyal community of Port enthusiasts who value its individuality and the inimitable character of its wines. These include connoisseurs, collectors, sommeliers and restaurateurs as well as those who simply enjoy drinking its wonderfully rich and complex Ports.
"The 2003 Vintage Port was aged for 21 months in wood and comes in at 92 grams of residual sugar. This is another oldie rereleased now. The Taylor's may be burlier and fresher, the Croft more nuanced and complex, but of the trio of 2003s in this report, this might well be the winner today. (Then again, it might not be; the comparison was certainly fun.) It has the most elegance, freshness and nuance, far younger than the Croft and more ready than the Taylor's. I can only say, I respect whatever choice you make; pick 'em. Personally, I lean to Taylor's in the longer run, but that is the least ready of the three."-Mark Squires