I am currently enjoying this bottle out at Race Rocks. Back when I used to live with my granny we always had a bottle of the Taylor Fladgate First Estate Reserve on hand for those occasions when a sip of something was required. Which reminds me of a fun (though mostly unrelated) story from that part of my life.
One day I spontaneously invited my new college friend Travis over to my granny’s for afternoon tea and a game of snooker. We rather fancied ourselves to be reincarnations of silly Edwardian gentleman (I was quite enamoured with the Drones Club from Jeeves and Wooster at the time) and my granny played along by serving us Key lime pie with our tea.
I thrashed him at snooker, and we discussed the formation of my basement gentlemen’s club which was to be known as the Snookoetry Club, a portmanteau of snooker and poetry. How refined we thought we were. Alas the Snookoetry Club never had any official meetings, although I daresay several evenings in that basement surely counted as prototypes.
A fair representation of the things that actually went on in that basement…
As we were leaving my granny’s to head back to college, she stood on the doorstep, and I asked her through the car window if there was anything she wanted me to pick up in town. “A bottle of liquor!” she cried as I pulled away. Laughing, Travis and I obliged, heading straight to the liquor store to pick something up for granny.
I don’t even think Travis was of age yet, or else he had forgotten his wallet, because I remember him being tossed from the store before I had made my choice. I had no idea what to purchase, since my granny already had a large liquor cabinet that she hardly ever touched, and at the time my knowledge was rather limited to beer. Deciding I wanted something mysterious that was new to me, I grabbed a bottle of Lillet before asking the resident Scotch gnome if my choice would be any good. “Ah, that’s in the original James Bond martini” he said. Since James Bond was another of my “classy” influences, I happily made the purchase.
That evening Granny and I enjoyed Lillet on ice for an aperitif before supper, and while I can’t be certain, there’s every chance that we enjoyed a drop of port afterwards for a digestif.
Taylor Fladgate: Late Bottled Vintage Porto 2011
Appearance: so dark red that it’s black… 20%
Nose: pomegranate, strawberries, and blackberries
Palate: strawberries, cherries, nice mouthfeel
Finish: a tasty Black Forest cake
Rating: 3/5 Good