Over the years, Port has been labelled to be only enjoyed by those whom sprout greys. I must admit I have been guilty of relating port to Grandma (who was partial to a port too many after dinner), but why should we let Grandma have all the fun!? Port is flavour intense and extremely versatile & should most certainly be enjoyed by all!
But before we get stuck into the many lip smackin’ good ways of using port, let’s quickly go over the basics….
WHAT IS PORT?
Port (known as Fortified Wine in Australia) is a sweet, viscous wine made from grapes mostly native to Portugal. The grapes are picked nice and ripe (and full of sugar) & fermented into wine. Just before all the sugar is turned into alcohol, a neutral wine spirit is added to the mix to stop the fermentation process, leaving a sweet, sticky wine to enjoy – commonly used as a dessert wine (with a high alcohol content, usually 18-20% a/v).
TYPES OF PORT:
White Port; made from white grapes. Common flavours include citrus, roasted nuts, baked apple, apricot & honey.
Ruby Port; Made from red grapes, usually aged for two-three years before bottling. Taste of rich, spicy fruits & berries.
Reserve Port; Made from red grapes. Rich berry flavours, chocolate & cinnamon.
Tawny Port; A blended port made from red grapes, aged in barrel for 3-40 years. Flavours of rich raisin, clove, fig & burnt caramel.
Vintage Port; Made from exceptional red grapes from a single vintage , aged in barrel for 2 years then bottled & stored in the cellar until mellowed & matured (usually comes with a higher price tag). Expect deliciously concentrated fruit flavours.
HOW DO WE USE IT?
Drink it neat...
Poured into proper port glass (smaller version of a wine glass), served just under room temperature. Approach Port with small sips. You want just enough to get that burst of fruit flavour (but not too much that it becomes overwhelming).
Pairs well with sharp cheddar or a stinky blue cheese. You could also try pairing with smoked, roasted or salty nuts.
Here’s a few of our favourites:
White Port & Tonic: Even parts White Port & tonic water over ice, garnished with mint!
Ruby On The Rocks: Pour your Ruby Port over ice & spruce it up with a wedge of grapefruit (try adding a dash of sparkling water).
Perfect for those hot Summer days!
Cooking with Port...
Jazz up your roast dinners with a sticky port & cranberry reduction!
Pour meat juices from your roast into a pan or skillet on low-medium heat.
Pour 1 cup of port & stir.
Add ¼ cup of cranberries and simmer for 5-8 minutes (stirring while your sauce reduces).
Add 1 ½ tablespoons of Hoisin Sauce and simmer for a further 3 minutes.
Stir in 1-2 table spoons of butter and wallah! You have yourself one hellava sauce!
Tip: Depending on your choice of roast – try adding herbs like rosemary for extra flavour!
Or why not try some Tawny Port over ice-cream?
Just like the title suggest, simply pour your Tawny Port over some vanilla-bean ice cream for a simple yet delicious dessert!
If you've never tried Fortified wine, or are intrigued to taste our local produce, why not treat yourself to one of our Deluxe Winery Tours to discover Queensland's delicious range of Tawny Port, Chocolate Port, Muscat & many more!
Tash Maree x