3/24/2011 - MDEFREITAS: 98 Points
Blandy's Madeira Bicentenary Celebration (The Cooper Square Hotel, NYC): [“Small, generally fine wine, especially Malmsey and Bual from Cama de Lobos”, “…a magnificent specimen of a true Bual from Campanário…” “It was a small harvest, but it was an excellent year for Malmsey and Boal, the grapes that make the sweeter wine styles from around Cama (now Câmara) the Lobos on the south side of the island.” – Charles Ridpath Blandy. Although small, the quality of the harvest was so good that Charles Blandy requested some of the barrels to be kept aside for his private collection. Pre-phylloxera, this wine was aged for 50 years in seasoned American oak casks in the adegas de São Francisco in Funchal, and re-bottled in 1986. Only a few bottles remain in the company's private collection.]
An embarrassment of riches. This darkly colored wine offered a distilled concentration of fruitcake, baking spices, caramel, crème brûlée and walnut skins. Monumental intensity and a finish that never quite does. You can revisit the flavors minutes after sampling by merely licking your gums. A meal in a glass. Profound.