Francois's tasting note on a late-1800-era Madeira reminded me that I wanted to open an old Madiera from my cellar for this Christmas's dessert wine.
I chose a vintage 1900 Malvazia from Barbieto.
Visually, the wine is a clear, garnet color. And I mean exctly the color of the garnet crystals in my rock collection.
One can get lost in the aromas. There's a good bit of alcohol on the nose. This is, after all, a fortified wine. And there are nuances of (duh!) maderization. A bit of nail polish. But then there's endless highly aromatic depth of complex fruit aromas: black cherries, orange peel, lemon, lime, plum. And spice scents.
On the mouth, the first impression is of tart acidity, and then the avalanche of fruit hits. Orange, tart cherry, lemon and lime peel, with a smoky nuance over all. The acidity makes the flavors dance elegantly on the palate, and the finish just goes on and on.
You know, desipte 105 years since the vintage, I may have opened this one too early.
Here's to Madeira and immortality.
Salut and Feliz Navidad,
Last edited by Paul Winalski
on Tue Dec 26, 2006 7:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.