Monday, August 17, 2009


I love port. Either as an apéritif (before the meal) or a digestif (after the meal). On Saturday I had some after our chicken barbecue.

Enjoying a glass (or three) of port on the deck.

The first time I tried port, I was on a United Airlines flight from Paris to San Francisco. I think it was in 2000. I had been bumped the day before and the next day they upgraded me to business class.

After an amazing meal -- I never knew that airline food could be so good -- the flight attendant pushed a little cart down the aisle. The cart was covered with a white cloth. On it was a silver tray with a bottle of port, and a small number of glasses.

With a knowing smile, she offered me some port. Yes please! I said. And I was hooked. I had a second glass. Since then I've always tried to have a bottle in the house. One bottle can last a long time, or it can go quickly, depending. And I like both ruby (bottle aged) and tawny (aged in wood barrels).

Port comes from Portugal, in the northern region along the Duoro River, and takes its name from the city of Porto at the river's mouth. There are good, inexpensive ports in most French supermarkets. Porto is commonly offered among the apéritifs in many French homes, and it's one of my favorites.

I'm sure there are very good, very expensive ports to be had, but I'm not much of an aficionado. I just like to drink it.

This bottle says tawny, but it looks more like ruby. Must be a young tawny. I've never tried a white port, but they exist. Tchin tchin!


  1. You should try a late-bottled vintage port [LBV]. They are reasonably priced, have a real depth and character to them, and perfect with any of the wonderful cheeses you have available nearby -Sláinte

  2. I am with you on that one. A la votre!

  3. We spent a fine afternoon at the Instituto do Vihno do Porto in Lisbon a while back. They offer tastings and appetizers to go with them, all in a quiet clubby setting. I'd never had port before, and it was a revelation.

  4. A tip to celebrate the 100,000 milestone! Why don't you buy your faithful readers and commenters a glass of that nice Port?! ;)) Martine

  5. I have very little, or no, experience with Port....but the few times I've had it, it's been nothing but an enjoyment.

  6. I don't believe I've ever tried port, but now that you've piqued my curiosity, I will try some the next opportunity I get.

  7. As a teenager I 'borrowed' a bottle of Port from my parents' cabinet and drank the entire thing with a friend. I've never been so hungover, nor have I been able to look at Port the same since. (we only drink Port after a meal in Australia)

  8. I have never had port, alas.
    I am intimidated where to start.


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