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Cockburn's Vintage Port 2015

Release Notes

Unsurprisingly, Touriga Franca constitutes the largest component of the Cockburn’s 2015 with 41% (compared with 30% in the 2011). It is followed by Touriga Nacional with 37% — this variety also excelled at Canais where it was sourced from the distinctive, mature 30 years Bico de Pato (duck’s bill) vineyard. This was picked 8 days after the rain of the 15th, from which it greatly benefited. The perfectly ripe berries delivered just 0.96 Kg/vine, giving the wine its velvety tannins and incomparable finesse and elegance. The superb Touriga Franca was sourced principally from Canais, complemented by a smaller quantity from Vale Coelho.

The balance of the blend was made up of old mixed vines (9%); Sousão (7%) and Alicante Bouschet (6%), the latter from Quinta do Cachão de Arnozelo, which contributed to the structure of the wine. A co-fermentation from Vale Coelho of old mixed vines, yielding just 0.36 Kg/vine, combined with Sousão and Touriga Franca added great concentration, freshness and grip to the wine.



Tasting Notes

Symington Family Estates critic

SFE Tasting Room source
2017 tasting note year
Great vitality and purity of fruit, focused and precise. Exudes freshness, which springs out of the glass. Aromas of fleshy, black plums and eucalyptus fragrance. Flavours of red cherries on the palate. Well-toned and muscular, full-flavoured with typical Cockburn’s ‘grip’.

Richard Mayson critic

Decanter (Dec. 2017) source
2017 tasting note year
Blend dominated by Touriga Franca (41%) and Touriga Nacional (37%). Mainly picked eight days after the mid-September rain; initially deep, ripe and dense on the nose, opening up to reveal a scented berry fruit bouquet. Lovely plum and berry fruit on the palate supported by fine-grained, gravelly tannins and a long, structured finish. Combines depth and finesse in equal measure.

Score: 96

Jancis Robinson MW critic (May 2017) source
2017 tasting note year
This was the second vintage port from this house. From 70% Quinta dos Canais and quite a bit from Quinta do Vale Coelho. South-facing vines. 40% Touriga Nacional, 40% Touriga Franca, 9% old mixed vines (350 g of fruit per vine) and a bit of Alicante and Sousão. 3,500 cases – just 10% of production (very unusual in the world of wine). Blackish purple. Neat and focused and fresh and luscious. Quite sweet and purple and very charming. Tingling on the finish. Very exciting and energetic. Some black-pepper top note on the sweetness. Quite a dry end. Lots of chew. Very long term and ambitious. Hint of Edinburgh rock.

Score: 18.5+

James Molesworth critic

Wine Spectator (Dec. 15 2017) source
2017 tasting note year
Distinctive, with mint and blueberry notes leading the way before plum, pasts and blackberry cobbler flavors fill in behind them. Rounded and open in feel. Best from 2025 to 2035.

Score: 92

James Suckling critic source
2017 tasting note year
Fantastic aromas of crushed berries and flowers. Some mineral undertones. Violets. Very fine and polished with ultra-fine tannins. Medium sweet Fresh and extremely clean. Very crisp and clean for such hot year. This celebrates the 200th anniversary of Cockburn. Best in 2026.

Score: 94

Manuel Carvalho critic

Público newspaper source
2017 tasting note year
Just as with the 2011, the Cockburn’s is once more impressive. At the heart of its style is the exquisite balance between finesse and grip. Intense aromas of ripe fruit, flowers and a hint of sea-breeze; a striking and generous Vintage with a long, expressive aftertaste.

Score: 97

Axel Probst critic source
2017 tasting note year
On the 200th birthday of the company: deep dark color. Complex, structured nose with balanced cassis and dark chocolate. On the palate sweeping sweetness, floral-fresh balanced fruit, white pepper, cassis and chocolate. Balanced, medium-pitched finish.

Score: 18/20

Nuno Guedes critic

Revista de Vinhos source
2017 tasting note year
Intense purple colour. Bouquet of rockrose, violets, raspberry and blueberry. Superb finesse on the palate and great structure — one of its standout characteristics. It will of course continue to develop for a long time but already very impressive. A wine of great breeding!

Score: 18,5/20

Derek Smedley MW critic

2017 tasting note year
Tasted at the Symington 2015 Port tasting May 2017    Spring violets the nose has freshness fragrance the start of the palate bramble and bilberry. Rich in the middle the fruit is ripe the palate velvet smooth fleshy and supple with at the back fresh fruits giving a lighter feel the finish has purity and elegance. Drink 2031-50

Score: 97

Richard Mayson critic source
2017 tasting note year
The only classic declaration from the Symington family this year, declared in celebration of Cockburn’s bicentenary. The wine emanates mostly from Quinta dos Canais, bolsterd by fruit from Vale Coelho and Quinta do Cachão do Arnozelo, all in the Douro Superior. Touriga Franca is the largest component of the blend (41%) followed closely by Touriga Nacional (37%). Old vines, Sousão and Alicante Bouschet make up the balance. Mostly picked eight days after the rain, which greatly benefited the ripeness and balance. Deep, ripe and dense initially on the nose, still a bit raw, this wine opened up after a couple of days to reveal a lovely scented berry fruit bouquet (reflecting the relatively high proportion of Touriga Nacional); similarly lovely plum and berry fruit on the palate with lovely fine-grained, gravelly tannins building in the mouth and a long structured finish. Not the biggest of the 2015s but this wine combines depth and finesse in equal measure. This is Cockburn back on form: a must buy for me!

Score: 18

Alex Bridgman critic

The Port Forum source
2017 tasting note year
Maroon with a lovely purple-plum colour, opaque. Subdued nose at first of lovely fresh fruit with depth and power. This opens up further with a little more time in the glass. Balanced and silky entry with a lovely texture. Sweet blackcurrant fruit and a delicious ripe tannic core. The blackcurrant grows on the palate; lively and full of joie de vivre. A lovely burst of rock rose blossoms on the aftertaste, slowly fading to leave a dry and tasty sweet blackcurrant finish of amazing ripeness. A really fine port.

Score: 93-95/100

Roger Voss critic

Wine Enthusiast source
2017 tasting note year
This wine has acidity and juicy black-currant fruits. It is relatively light in structure, giving a delicious wine with attractive fruits that's ready to drink from 2024.

Score: 90

Mark Squires critic

Robert Parker • The Wine Advocate source
2017 tasting note year
The 2015 Vintage Port is mostly a (Douro Superior) blend of Touriga Franca 41% and Touriga Nacional 37%, with old vines, Sousão and Alicante Bouschet making up the rest. It comes in at 104 grams per liter of residual sugar. This is the Bicentenary Edition of this old house. Focused and tight—probably the tightest of the Symington 2015s—it is hard-edged and precise, but it does seem to have streaks of alcohol and baked, slightly roasted fruit. This is the one in the Symington 2015 stable that most obviously fits the old Port stereotype—massive and impenetrable when young. It easily needs the most time. Big, deep and a bit harsh and astringent just now, it is a little hard to evaluate fully. It may well improve with cellaring, but it will likely be the least attractive to drink young. It was also, to me, the least convincing for the moment, but it certainly has some upside potential. If it comes around well and integrates its parts, it should easily age gracefully for several more decades. This has been released. There were 3,500 cases produced, plus some large-format bottles.

Score: 91+


0 tasting note year

More about Cockburn's

To learn more about Cockburn's here on The Vintage Port Site, read a concise Profile of the Cockburn's Brand, and detailed viticultural profiles of Quinta dos Canais and Quinta do Vale Coelho.  If you would like to learn even more about Cockburn's history and the full range of Ports styles offered, visit the Cockburn's website.

See details of other years in which this wine was made

  1. 2011
  2. 2007
  3. 2003
  4. 2000
  5. 1997
  6. 1994
  7. 1991
  8. 1985
  9. 1983
  10. 1975
  11. 1970
  12. 1967
  13. 1963
  14. 1960
  15. 1955
  16. 1950
  17. 1947
  18. 1945
  19. 1935
  20. 1931
  21. 1927
  22. 1912
  23. 1908
  24. 1904
  25. 1900
  26. 1896
  27. 1894
  28. 1890

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