2015 ANNIV 21A. #2 SYNAPTIC Transmission ANNIVERSARY Issue 2015 - The 100 Year Old Bottle Of Port Wine. JPG

Pouring the 100-year-old Seppeltsfield wine!




The 100-Year-Old Bottle Of Port Wine




Recently, I visited Adelaide, Australia, on business, and upon my landing at the airport, my host took me directly to one of the landmarks of this region, the Barossa Valley.


The Barossa Valley is quite sparsely populated with approximately 20,000 inhabitants. It is one of Australia’s many grape growing and wine producing regions. Others include the Hunter Valley (which I have visited previously), Yarra Valley, the McLaren Vale, Margaret River and Coonawara. However, this was my first opportunity to explore the Barossa Valley where the main varietal that has garnered international acclaim is the Australian Shiraz.


Though I was somewhat jet-lagged from the long trip from Toronto, my host drove me to a few wineries on a gloriously sunny Australian afternoon. We toured a few wineries, and enjoyed their inventory together with several local Australian artisanal cheeses and processed meats. To my surprise, however, I was taken to a winery, called “Seppeltsfield”, which specializes in the production of fortified wines such as sherry and port. To my amazement, the winery allowed tasting of their signature wine product, a “100-year-old port”, which was bottled in 1914 and stamped accordingly with that date on its label. The wine steward poured us each a thimble full, and it ran slowly out of the bottle, like molasses, and had a deep, golden brown color. We required no accompanying comestible with this signature port. Indeed, we enjoyed it all on its own.


Undoubtedly, at least for me, this 1914 vintage port wine will be remembered as one of the most amazing experiences I have enjoyed to date in wine tasting.   I knew immediately that I must come home with a bottle of this rarefied liquid, which I did. However, as I traveled with only carry-on luggage, I had to be mindful of the volume in the bottle to be transported. To my good fortune, Seppeltsfield winery prepared this 100-year-old port in a 100 ml bottle, the maximum permissible for carry-on bags.


Now that I have returned to Toronto, the only question I ask myself is, “On what special occasion do you choose to open and enjoy a 100-year-old bottle of vintage port?” In this regard, I am reminded of a phrase I learned in Latin class in high school: “Gaudeamus igitur iuvenes dum sumus” (Let us rejoice while we are still young). While I may not be so young these days, I would like to believe I am young at heart. And, I have just the perfect occasion in the near future to share this prize port wine with family and friends!



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