Last weekend Rupert Symington went to Vancouver, British Columbia, to show Graham’s wines at the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival. This event, which began very humbly in 1979 as a fund-raiser for the Playhouse has long since turned into one of the most important international wine shows, and Graham’s has been proud to participate for many years. This year, the Festival had a special focus on Fortified Wines.
Rupert manned the tasting table himself, together with colleagues from Mark Anthony Wine Merchants, our Canadian distributor, pouring Graham’s Six Grapes, The Tawny, 10 Year Old Tawny, 2005 Late Bottled Vintage and the Quinta dos Malvedos 1999 Vintage Port for our visitors and answering their questions about Port.
In addition, for those who could not resist the promise of “Elegance, Power and Complexity” there was a special vertical tasting of eight Graham’s Vintages: 2007, 2003, 2000, 1994, 1985, 1980, 1977 and 1970. For this, Roy Hersh of For The Love of Port joined Rupert to co-moderate the tasting. The wines lived up to their billing and were showing superbly, the 1985 in particular just staggered the audience, as an example of Vintage Port in its absolute prime.
When it was all over, Rupert had his reward: together with Dan Wildermuth of Rodney Strong Vineyards in Sonoma and Chris Hoffmeister of Mark Anthony, he landed a 7’8″ (2.30 metre), roughly 300 pound white sturgeon in the Fraser River in British Columbia. It was released again after the photo op, so no caviar that night, alas!