Sandeman Vau Vintage 1997 / 1.5 L.

Item#: 2331

WE9393 pts. - Wine Enthusiast - 12/15/1999
Perhaps the major surprise is that one of the top wines is a single quinta Port from Sandeman, a house that, after a fairly lean period, is reaffirming its commitment to vintage Port. This is luscious, rich, almost creamy in texture, with piles of black fruit, lavender and spice.
SP9292 pts. - Wine Spectator - Feb 29, 2000
Dark purple in color, with wonderful violet, berry and cherry aromas. Full-bodied, medium-sweet, with a solid core of fruit and tannins. Long finish. Subtle. Best Sandeman since the 1960s. Best after 2008.
SP9191 pts. - Wine Spectator - Feb 2, 2017
Showing some maturity now, with rum raisin, toffee and buckwheat hints along the edges, while the core maintains a gentle feel of mulled plum and blackberry fruit. Reveals a touch of cinnamon on the soft-edged finish. Approachable now, in an elegant style.—1997 Vintage Port retrospective (January 2017). Drink now through 2026. 25,200 cases made. (James Molesworth)
ST8888 pts. - Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar - May/Jun 2000
Bright ruby. Fruity, ripe aromas of black cherry, blackberry and maple syrup. Not especially fleshy or sweet but juicy and intensely flavored, with notes of smoke, chocolate and orange peel. Finishes with lovely freshness and sneaky length. Shows modest structure for aging but this stylish wine offers considerable early appeal.
WS8888 pts. - Wine & Spirits - April 1, 2000
George Sandeman created Vau Vintage as a new idea for a secondary declaration. It is not tied directly to a quinta’s production, as is now required for single quinta wines. Instead, it is blended from the best lots available in that vintage, but made for earlier consumption than a classic, more weighty and structured vintage would be (one simply labeled “Sandeman”). This ’97 is simple and direct, its primary black fruit chewy and unevolved. The flavor continues in a straight line, lasting and balanced. Drinkable early as a young, fruity wine, this will probably be at its best when the fruit has evolved, around 2007 to 2012.

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Portugal | Douro

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Sandeman

Critical Acclaim

WE93 93 pts. / Wine Enthusiast (12/15/1999)

Perhaps the major surprise is that one of the top wines is a single quinta Port from Sandeman, a house that, after a fairly lean period, is reaffirming its commitment to vintage Port. This is luscious, rich, almost creamy in texture, with piles of black fruit, lavender and spice.

SP92 92 pts. / Wine Spectator (Feb 29, 2000)

Dark purple in color, with wonderful violet, berry and cherry aromas. Full-bodied, medium-sweet, with a solid core of fruit and tannins. Long finish. Subtle. Best Sandeman since the 1960s. Best after 2008.

SP91 91 pts. / Wine Spectator (Feb 2, 2017)

Showing some maturity now, with rum raisin, toffee and buckwheat hints along the edges, while the core maintains a gentle feel of mulled plum and blackberry fruit. Reveals a touch of cinnamon on the soft-edged finish. Approachable now, in an elegant style.—1997 Vintage Port retrospective (January 2017). Drink now through 2026. 25,200 cases made. (James Molesworth)

ST88 88 pts. / Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar (May/Jun 2000)

Bright ruby. Fruity, ripe aromas of black cherry, blackberry and maple syrup. Not especially fleshy or sweet but juicy and intensely flavored, with notes of smoke, chocolate and orange peel. Finishes with lovely freshness and sneaky length. Shows modest structure for aging but this stylish wine offers considerable early appeal.

WS88 88 pts. / Wine & Spirits (April 1, 2000)

George Sandeman created Vau Vintage as a new idea for a secondary declaration. It is not tied directly to a quinta’s production, as is now required for single quinta wines. Instead, it is blended from the best lots available in that vintage, but made for earlier consumption than a classic, more weighty and structured vintage would be (one simply labeled “Sandeman”). This ’97 is simple and direct, its primary black fruit chewy and unevolved. The flavor continues in a straight line, lasting and balanced. Drinkable early as a young, fruity wine, this will probably be at its best when the fruit has evolved, around 2007 to 2012.

Where It's From

Appellation / Douro

View more wines from Douro

Located in northwest Portugal, The Douro region follows the path of the Douro river. It's home to Portugal's most prized export, port wines, as well as a blossoming selection of world-class table wines. Typical red grapes used in Douro are Touriga Nacional (which produces tannic, dark red wines) and Tempranillo (under the name Tinta Roriz). The steep slopes of the Douro River Valley make it difficult to farm, but the resulting wines are worth all the effort.

Country / Portugal

View more wines from Portugal

Portugal is most famous (and justifiably so) for its Port wines, fortified wines that are typically sweet and often served with dessert. Port wines come in many styles such as Tawny, Late Bottled Vintage, etc, and are classified by how they were produced.

Besides Port, however, Portugal is also one of the fastest-rising wine countries in the world (as far as quality and production) when it comes to table wines. You'll find some unbelievable values in Portuguese table wines, with grapes like Touriga Nacional at the forefront.

More Information

SKU 2331
Product Type Wine
Alternate Name Sandeman Vau Vintage
Country Portugal
Product Location - Location-Appellation Douro
Package Size 1.5 L.
Wine/Spirit Brand Sandeman
Bottles per Case 6
Spirit/Port Style Vintage Port
Vintage 1997
Can it Be Shipped No
Premier Pick No
Wine Type Fortified Wine
Dollar Sale (Y/N) No

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Wine Spectator Top 100 SelectionWine Spectator Top 100 selection - 2018 | #23
Taylor Fladgate Vintage Porto

2016 / 750 ml.

Item #: 88784

SP9898 pts. - Wine Spectator - Dec 31, 2018
This is packed with raspberry, blackberry and blueberry fruit flavors that play off one another, melding with anise, fruitcake and ganache notes. A warm tarry edge coats the finish, revealing an echo of bramble. A seriously grippy, strapping Port, this revels in its power. Best from 2032 through 2055. 6,200 cases made. (James Molesworth)
WE9898 pts. - Wine Enthusiast - 12/1/2018
Ripe, structured while also fruity, this intense, perfumed Port is opulent while also elegant. Its tannins and great fruit are finely integrated and are rich with potential. Black fruits, berries and a juicy aftertaste add freshness to the wine. Drink from 2028.
VN9797 pts. - Vinous - Jun 2018
In 2016 Taylor’s began picking in Vargellas on 17 September, followed by Pinhão Valley estate on 23 and 26 September. The 2016 Vintage Port has an aristocratic bouquet with tight wound aromas of blackberry, bilberry, crushed stone, black olive and a light, marine-tinged element, perhaps almost peat-like. The palate is just beautiful with fine, chiseled tannins and a perfect line of acidity. There is that almost “arching” structure one always seeks in a great Taylor’s with a gentle but insistent grip towards the finish. It is everything you really want from a Vintage Port. Production is 6,200 cases.
RP94+94–96 pts. - Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate - 19th Jul 2018
The 2016 Vintage Port is a field blend set to be bottled about a week after this tasting. It was the final blend. It was aged for 20 months in wood and comes in with 102 grams of residual sugar. The Croft might be as rich — although I don’t think so; we’ll see as they age — but this is more expressive right now. The most delicious of the three Fladgate Group offerings, this has the sexiest fruit, although the Fonseca seems to have more pure power. Even allowing that it had a fair bit of air, this was showing surprisingly well for young Taylor’s. That is speaking relatively, of course, because this still has power and energy. Personally, this year I’d definitely pick Fonseca, though. Fonseca just seems to have a little more upside potential. With Port, of course, things change over the decades. This is a first look, not a final word.
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Portugal | Douro | Porto

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Wine Spec. Top 100 - 2018 | #23

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Quinta do Noval Vintage Porto

2016 / 750 ml.

Item #: 88582

SP9898 pts. - Wine Spectator - Dec 31, 2018
This is distinctive from the start, with a youthfully rambunctious display of dark currant, fig and blackberry fruit paste flavors liberally spiked with bramble, Turkish coffee and ganache notes. As the fruit pumps through the finish, a tarry spine adds a bristling, mouthwatering edge. Sports more obvious grip and is a touch drier in style than most of its peers. Best from 2035 through 2055. 6,000 cases made.
RP9797 pts. - Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate - 19th Jul 2018
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VN9494 pts. - Vinous - Jun 2018
The 2016 Quinta do Noval Vintage Port is a blend of Touriga Naçional, Touriga Franc, Tinta Cão and Sousão, all foot-trodden and aged in wooden casks for 18 months. It has a voluminous, warm and inviting bouquet that positively “bulges” with damson, bilberry, crushed violets and blackcurrants, all beautifully defined and focused. The palate is medium-bodied with a feisty, spicy opening: black fruit laced with cracked black pepper, clove, cardamom and a pinch of sea salt. Whilst the aromatics have all the “fun”, the palate is more “serious”, as if compensating for the nose with a sense of reserve and restraint. Together they make for a fascinating, quite mercurial Quinta do Noval that should age gloriously over the next 30 years.
WE9292 pts. - Wine Enthusiast - 12/1/2018
Very ripe fruit give this wine a surprisingly soft texture. It has generous tannins to go with this opulent fruitiness. The wine is going to age relatively quickly, so drink from 2026.
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Portugal | Douro | Porto

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Primary Grape: Touriga Nacional

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Fonseca Vintage Porto

2016 / 750 ml.

Item #: 88786

JS9898 pts. - JamesSuckling.com - Tuesday, May 29, 2018
Lots of ripe fruit here with raisins and wet earth that turn to violets and hot stones. Full-bodied, tannic and powerful with fantastic grip and intensity. Grabs you. Impressive. Drink in 2025.
SP9797 pts. - Wine Spectator - Dec 31, 2018
This leads in with bramble, spearmint and blueberry notes, with the energy extending through the core of dark plum, blackberry and fig fruit. The finish features a strong graphite spine, allowing this to draw deep water, but this remains stylish in feel overall. The definition of suave. Best from 2030 through 2055. 4,900 cases made, 1,100 cases imported. (James Molesworth)
WE9797 pts. - Wine Enthusiast - 12/1/2018
This bottling brings together a fine structure with great fruit to give a luscious wine that is also destined for long-term aging. With its ripe berry flavors sustained by some acidity, this is already balanced. Drink from 2028.
RP96+96–98 pts. - Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate - 19th Jul 2018
The 2016 Vintage Port is a field blend that was not quite bottled when seen (set for a week later), but it was the final blend. It was aged for 20 months in wood and comes in with 99 grams of residual sugar. This Fonseca is remarkably expressive, lifted and gloriously fresh. It has good concentration but some years have had more and seemed sexier. However, the most notable feature is the structure. It is very impressive in structure, that classic Port power and firmness coming to the fore and overshadowing the rest at the moment. This is very tight and very unevolved. Don’t even think of buying it if you aren’t prepared to cellar it. The 2030 start date that I have will not be even close to late enough if you want harmony and complexity. To me, this is the best of the three 2016s from the Fladgate Group this issue (Croft and Taylor being the other two), thanks to its pure intensity, but time will tell if it becomes as sexy as I’m sure Taylor’s will be. In the meanwhile, Fonseca looks like one of the greats of this vintage.
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Portugal | Douro | Porto

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Primary Grape: Touriga Nacional

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Sandeman Fine Ruby Porto NV / 750 ml.

NV / 750 ml.

Item #: 61135

WE8686 pts. - Wine Enthusiast - 11/1/2006
A solid value in ruby Port, Sandeman’s bottling pairs dried fruits with leathery notes to offer more than simple, grapy fruit. Finishes with fresh, spicy notes. Imported by Pernod Ricard.
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WS9191 pts. - Wine & Spirits - October 1, 2001
This starts with a complex aroma of salinity and spice, this it deepens, the flavors bringing meadow flowers to mind. Queen Anne’s lace and hemp. Lasting and refined, this is great for sipping at a tapas bar (if they’ll open a bottle as fresh as this one), delicate enough for a first course of fish.
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SP9393 pts. - Wine Spectator - Sep 30, 2016
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An elegant tawny, perfumed with soft tannins and a good edge of wood acidity and spirit. The wine is dry, densely flavored, tasting mature, showing a good balance between young sweetness and age, with everything well integrated.
RP8989 pts. - Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate - 28th Dec 2018
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WS8888 pts. - Wine & Spirits - April 1, 2006
Flavors of salted caramel and orange peel give this tawny complexity. It’s warm with more citrus fruit coming up in the end. For fresh roasted almonds.
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