Wine Tasting Video: Five Madeiras

Barbeito Single Harvest Meio Seco 2000 (£19 per 50cl  Butlers Wine Cellar, Amps Fine Wines, Selfridges, Uncorked, Reserve Wines)
Fresh and remarkably young for an 11-year-old, although this is quite dry (not bone dry), it’s almost Muscat-y, with a grapey/barley sugar character, gentle toasty nuttiness and something peaty almost like malt whisky. S

Blandy’s Colheita Bual 1991 (£34.00/50cl Slurp, Halifax Wine Co,,
Pale but very interesting, packed with tangy fruitcake flavours – almonds, walnuts, raisins, cloves, cinnamon and figs but there’s also a rich, nutty, polished mahogany furniture character, a touch of iodine and classic acidity to keep it all fresh and wonderful. T

Blandy’s Alvada 5 Year Old Rich Madeira (£14.18/50cl Waitrose, Booths)
Copes surprisingly well after the previous wonder, richer & sweeter with touches of treacle toffee, walnut cake (complete with coffee icing) and a heady note that reminds me of Tia Maria. S-

Blandy’s 2004 Harvest Malmsey Madeira (£16.00 Waitrose)
Think this comes further down the pecking order than Alvada, but I actually preferred it. It’s soft and rich, with a touch of spirity bite, and quite plush toffee apple and treacle toffee flavours, backed up (of course) by classic Madeira scalp-itching acidity. S(-)

Blandy’s Colheita Malmsey 1992 (£37-40/50cl  Slurp, Halifax Wine Co,,
Profound and fabulous, yet still delicate and dainty, this is richer than the previous two, but (thanks to its age?) comes across as drier. Again, there are those lush fruitcake, toffee apple and polished furniture characters, plus the eggy spice & vanilla note of uncooked fruitcake mix. Massively concentrated, but still delicate, this is wonderful, but the Bual just shades it for me. T-

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