I drink a lot of Madeira, at all sorts of price points, and I have to tell you this is easily the best one I’ve tasted in the last four or five years. My tasting group opened all six of the current Rare Wine Co. Historic Series releases at our most recent meeting, and the room got really quiet when everyone tasted this. Of all the wines that night (and there were many), this was the only bottle that mysteriously disappeared, no doubt removed to the darkest corner of our host’s cellar like Poe’s infamous Cask of Amontillado. Although it’s fascinating, I will spare you the entire history of Madeira. If you’re interested in reading more, the Rare Wine Co.’s site is the place to start. I will say in particular that this wine was a mindbender. If one of the definitions of “great wine” is having the maximum amount of flavor packed onto the lightest possible frame, it doesn’t get much greater than this. A standard bottle will easily serve 12-15 people and is fine sitting open for six months or more. Just make sure you’re pouring half rations or Grandma is definitely going to need a nap. This is like a Brian Wilson harmony, and although it may not sell for Romanée-Conti prices, a perfect wine is a perfect wine. 100 points, arbitrary Brad Jones scale.
Mostly Verdelho. Serve cool.