See vintage reviews going back to 1960...

Want to find out how your birth-year fared? Or want to know which vintages are drinking well now? Our Port vintage guide has you covered…

2016

Keep

Generally declared. Structured, well-balanced wines for drinking from the late 2020s and over the long term

Richard Mayson, 2018

See Decanter’s report on 2016 vintage Port

2015

Keep

Very nearly outstanding, with Ramos Pinto and Niepoort declaring in preference to 2016. Limited declaration, mostly single-quinta wines

Richard Mayson, 2018

See Decanter’s report on 2015 vintage Port

2011

Keep

Universally declared, outstanding wines with poise and finesse that will keep for life. Approach from 2025

Richard Mayson, 2018

See Decanter’s report on 2011 vintage Port


Top Christmas Port recommendations

Video: How to decant vintage Port


2009

Keep

A hot year producing ripe, opulent wines. Limited declaration: Taylor’s, Fonseca, and Croft declared, as well as Warre’s. Drink over the medium-to-long-term

Richard Mayson, 2018

2008

Keep

Dry, cool season and fortuitous late ripening for those who held out until mid-September’s unexpected sunshine. Single-quinta vintage declaration.

See Decanter’s report on 2008 vintage Port

2007

Keep

Widely declared. A relatively cool growing season produced wines with great purity and definition for drinking over the medium-to-long-term. Drink from the early 2020s

Richard Mayson, 2018

See Decanter’s report on 2007 vintage Port

2006

Keep

A generally undeclared vintage but with some notable exceptions. Unrelenting hot weather.

See Decanter’s report on 2006 vintage Port

2005

Keep

The harvesting weather could not have been better. All indicators point to a great vintage

See Decanter’s report on 2005 vintage Port

2004

Keep

A good year after a bad start

See Decanter’s report on 2004 vintage Port

2003

Keep/Drink

A long, hot summer produced ripe, voluptuous wines. Some are already on the cusp of being ready to drink, others need ten more years. Widely declared

Richard Mayson, 2018

See Decanter’s report on 2003 vintage Port

2002

Drink now

After high hopes at the outset, 2002 proved to be something of a damp squib

See Decanter’s report on 2002 vintage Port

2001

Keep

Most declared either single-quinta Ports or under their second label

See Decanter’s report on 2001 vintage Port

2000

Keep

A small harvest produced fine, concentrated wines that were universally declared. Drink from 2020 – the best will last a lifetime

Richard Mayson, 2018

See Decanter’s report on 2000 vintage Port

1998

Keep

Some excellent single-quinta Ports for drinking in the medium-term

See Decanter’s report on 1998 vintage Port

1997

Drink

A widely declared vintage producing well-structured wines. Approachable now and for drinking over the next two decades

Richard Mayson, 2018

See Decanter’s report on 1997 vintage Port

1996

Keep

With a couple of exceptions, only the canny or the lucky will strike gold

See Decanter’s report on 1996 vintage Port

1995

Keep

Eccentric weather conditions permitted only a few producers to declare a vintage

See Decanter’s report on 1995 vintage Port

1994

Drink

The start of the modern era for vintage Port, with outstanding wines that are ripe and well-structured. May be enjoyed now but the best will continue to improve and will last and last

Richard Mayson, 2018

See Decanter’s report on 1994 vintage Port

1992

Keep

A split declaration – a year favoured by Taylor’s and Fonseca over and above 1991. Rich, concentrated wines for drinking now and over the next 20 years

Richard Mayson, 2018

See Decanter’s report on 1992 vintage Port

1991

Drink

Soft and relatively early maturing, declared by Dow’s, Graham’s and Warre’s among others. Drink now and over the next 10 years

Richard Mayson, 2018

See Decanter’s report on 1991 vintage Port

1987

drink soon

This was a low output year few declared and the world slump was detrimental to vintage port export

See Decanter’s report on 1987 vintage Port

1985

Drink

Universally declared; a warm summer produced some outstandingly good wines for the long term, but some emerged with serious faults. Buyer beware! The best are lovely now and can be drunk over the next 25 years

Richard Mayson, 2018

See Decanter’s report on 1985 vintage Port

1983

Drink

Widely declared, although a few shippers preferred 1982. Firm, tight-knit wines that can be drunk now, and the best will keep for another 10-20 years

Richard Mayson, 2018

See Decanter’s report on 1983 vintage Port

1982

drink soon

Forward and relatively fast-maturing, with soft, sweet character

See Decanter’s report on 1982 vintage Port

1980

Drink

An unfairly under-rated vintage which produced relatively dry, highly drinkable wines

See Decanter’s report on 1980 vintage Port

1977

Drink

Considered one of the ‘vintages of the century’. There’s some concern that some wines will never soften

See Decanter’s report on 1977 vintage Port

1970

Drink

A fine vintage which was widely declared and continues to fulfill its promise

See Decanter’s report on 1970 vintage Port

1967

Drink

Two leading shippers declared 1967, but there was little that was memorable

Weather Conditions

After a cool summer (without any real heat in July or August), the grapes were still green and backward when picking began around 20 September.

Both yields and sugar levels were low. Many picked too early (fearing a repeat of the rains which had marred the latter part of the previous three vintages), however warm weather continued into October and, unusually, the best grapes with higher sugar readings were picked last.

Best Producers

Two leading shippers (Cockburn and Martinez) declared 1967 in preference to 1966, whereas a handful – including Noval and Sandeman- declared both. At best 1967 produced gentle, middle-distance wines, but even the finest are starting to fade.

  • Cockburn
  • Quinta do Noval Nacional

1966

Drink

This may be the most under-rated year of the century: wines had structure and good flavour

Weather Conditions

An exceptionally wet winter prepared the vines for a hot, dry summer. In August, temperatures of 45C were recorded twice at Pinhao in the heart of the Cima Corgo but with so much ground water, the grapes did not dry up or raisinise.

Rain finally arrived during the harvest, but with yields well-down on average the crop came to no harm.

The fermentations were helped by cool weather and musts registered higher-than-average readings with excellent colour. It was clear at the end of the harvest that a fine vintage was in prospect.

Best Producers

History has been rather unfair to the 1966s which, until relatively recently, were completely overshadowed by the 1963s. Although quality is not as uniformly high as 1963, 1966 hits many of the same high spots with wines combining concentration, structure and intensity. Although bottlings vary (a consequence of bottling in both Vila Nova de Gaia and in the UK) Dow and Fonseca are stupendous.

  • Calem
  • Dow’s
  • Fonseca
  • Graham’s
  • Quinta do Noval Nacional
  • Taylor’s

1963

Drink

A classic. No other vintage since has such an extensive roll of honour

Weather Conditions

A textbook growing season: warm weather throughout the summer with no rain from June onwards. A little rain fell in mid-September, helping to swell the grapes just before the harvest. Yields were high.

Fine weather continued through the vintage, which took place in perfect conditions with cool night-time temperatures serving to control fermentations.

Best Producers

The combination of a near-perfect growing season and temperate weather during the harvest (at a time when temperature control was unheard of) made for a benchmark vintage.

With very few exceptions, nearly all the shippers produced supremely balanced, well-structured wines for a full-on declaration. No vintage since can claim quite so many classic wines (with the only caveat being the variation between different bottlings). Anyone born in 1963 has a wine for life.

  • Cockburn
  • Croft
  • Delaforce
  • Dow’s
  • Fonseca
  • Graham’s
  • Quinta do Noval Nacional
  • Taylor’s
  • Warre’s

1960

Drink

Erratic conditions reduced yields and dramatically compromised quality

Weather Conditions

A hot, dry summer was relieved at the last minute by refreshing rain just before picking began on 19 September. The rain brought the intense heat to an end so that the lagares took more work and produced musts with good structure and depth of colour.

Best Producers

This beguiling vintage seemed to peak in the early 1980s but the better wines now appear to be sitting on a long plateau and are still drinking well. The wines are mostly middle-weight and lacking a little in backbone but are soft, sweet and attractive for drinking now.

  • Cockburn
  • Dow’s
  • Graham’s
  • Quinta do Noval Nacional