Port: The Red Sweet Wine With Versatility

The richness, residual sugar, and alcoholic punch of a good port wine is tailor-made for this time of year. And yet, port wine remains one of the least understood and appreciated style of cordials on the market. Port, or Porto, officially, comes from the Duoro Valley in Portugal. It is the oldest known protected wine region in the world, dating back to 1756. Port is generally thought of as a dessert wine due to its elevated sugar levels and neutral grape spirits. Most port is made from red grapes; though white port is becoming more and more popular, especially for use in cocktails. Portugal allows some 100 varietals to be used, but most port is produced from the same four or five varietals. While there are many different types of red port bottling, the most common are tawny, ruby, colheita, and vintage. Vintage port ages well; rewarding the patient connoisseur.

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