Saturday, October 13, 2007

Penfold's The Grandfather Port

So, back when Raph and I were roommates, we had this crazy Australian neighbor. He was the kind of guy who would just walk right through your back yard while you were grilling dinner without asking. He was also of the opinion that most things Australian, when it came to wine, were generally superior. As we got to know Ben better, he made some good points and our livers all, collectively, suffered.

So, one day I was checking out a wine shop I'd not been to before. It was called Arista and they had a few bottles of Penfold's The Grandfather port. It wasn't cheap; I think I paid about $80 for it (though I now know better prices are to be had). I mainly bought it so I could set it up in my living room and every time Ben came over he'd see it and wish he had some. I told him I was saving it for a special event.

Well, the bastard just had to show me up. He flew to Australia and bought a bottle of Penfold's The Great Grandfather port, which is even better and more expensive, and set it up in his kitchen so I'd see it every time I came over. Lucky for me that was about the time I bought a house and moved away from his smirkiness.

So, I decided the special event I was saving The Grandfather for was my wedding. Only problem with that little plan was I was so busy the day of and at the wedding that I forgot all about it. So a few days later when Ben's parents were in town we had dinner then went back to my place and opened The Grandfather.

It is not like opening a normal bottle. The thing comes in a wooden box with a clear plexiglass sliding cover. The top is not wrapped in foil, but coated in red wax. It comes with a second cork and instructions on how to use it (soak in water for one hour before re-corking). We cut the wax, drowned the re-corking cork and all had a sip.

It's the best port I've ever had. Well, the best of this sort. There are some old Vintage Kopke's that really make me happy, but that's a different sort of port all together. As far as the brown stuff goes, this was truly great. Completely smooth, sweet but not overly.

So all I have to look forward to are my Vintage Kopke's when they come of age, and Ben's bottle of The Great Grandfather, which I eagerly await.

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