What's the Difference Between Late Bottled Vintage & Vintage Port?

What’s the Difference Between Late Bottled Vintage & Vintage Port?

Port is a Portuguese fortified wine that has been produced for centuries and is one of the most popular and beloved wines in the world. Port is made from grapes grown in the Douro Valley in Northern Portugal and is a sweet, full-bodied red wine that is usually enjoyed after a meal. While there are many different types of port, two of the most popular are Late Bottled Vintage (LBV) and Vintage Port.

Late Bottled Vintage Port

Late Bottled Vintage (LBV) port is a style of port that is made from a single vintage and is aged in oak barrels for four to six years before bottling. LBV port is typically ready to drink when it is released, so it does not need to be aged further. LBV port is generally less expensive than vintage port and has a more fruity, mellow flavor with notes of plum, cherry, and blackberry. It is also slightly sweeter than vintage port and has a lower alcohol content.

Vintage Port

Vintage port is a style of port that is made from a single vintage and is aged in oak barrels for two to three years before bottling. Unlike LBV port, vintage port must be aged for several more years after bottling before it is ready to drink. Vintage port is typically more expensive than LBV port and has a more complex flavor with notes of black cherry, blackberry, and spice. It is also slightly drier than LBV port and has a higher alcohol content.

Differences between Late Bottled Vintage and Vintage Port

Age

The main difference between LBV and vintage port is the age of the wine. LBV port is aged for four to six years in oak barrels before bottling, while vintage port is aged for two to three years in oak barrels before bottling. Vintage port must also be aged for several more years after bottling before it is ready to drink.

Price

LBV port is typically less expensive than vintage port due to the shorter aging period. This makes LBV port more accessible to many people who may not be able to afford vintage port.

Flavor

The flavor of LBV and vintage port is also different. LBV port is typically fruitier and sweeter with notes of plum, cherry, and blackberry. Vintage port is more complex with notes of black cherry, blackberry, and spice. It is also slightly drier than LBV port.

Alcohol Content

LBV port has a lower alcohol content than vintage port, usually around 19-20% ABV. Vintage port has a higher alcohol content, usually around 20-22% ABV.

Conclusion

Late Bottled Vintage (LBV) and vintage port are two of the most popular styles of port. The main differences between them are the age of the wine, the price, the flavor, and the alcohol content. LBV port is aged for four to six years before bottling, is less expensive, has a fruitier, sweeter flavor, and has a lower alcohol content. Vintage port is aged for two to three years before bottling, is more expensive, has a more complex flavor, and has a higher alcohol content.

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