2001 Henriques and Henriques Sercial 20%

Madeira (a Portuguese island, although 1000 km SW, and lies off the NW African coast).

The styles are fortified with neutral spirit, and barrel aged in casks – in this instance bottled in 2014.  Most wines are the result of careful blending; the single vintage release is often called a colheita.

I have previously listed some Madeira internet resources on this blog; one I missed with many details of the wine reviewed is here.

The grape variety Sercial generally makes the driest styles, with sweeter ones ranging through Verdelho, Bual, and Malvasia (Malmsey). Young Madeira styles don’t have the complexities which emerge after 15 or more years (or much longer). But 15-20 years aging suits my budget!

Bright amber colour; scents of salinity and mixed nuts (almond, hazelnut) with citrus peel.

Superb palate, supple and rich, with orange cake, stonefruit, salinity, mixed nuts and astonishing length. Sweetness (55 g/l), is folded in with depth of fruit, and balanced acidity. This wine is fresh, complete and riveting.

To 2030 and 94 points.


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