Robert Parker – 94
The Fonseca 2009 has a very sweet, typically opulent bouquet of black plum, blackberry, chimney soot and a touch of pencil shavings that is very complex and alluring. The palate is full-bodied with powerful ripe blackberry, allspice, clove and balsamic notes, a roiling, powerful, assertive Fonseca with a sweet, dark chocolate-tinged finish that grips the mouth, but it needs two decades to mellow and demonstrate the finesse to balance the intensity. This is a wonderful 2009 Vintage Port, though I suspect that the 2011 will ultimately prove even better. Tasted May 2013.
Vinous – 89+
Full, deep, saturated ruby. The aromas of plum, cherry and licorice show an almost roasted ripeness. Large-scaled, superripe and verging on exotic; the wine’s huge tannins are buffered by very sweet, deep black cherry and dark berry fruit flavors. I find this port a bit blurry compared to the vintage’s best examples. Tasted three times, with similar results.
JancisRobinson.com – 17.5
Blackish purple. Heady, opulent nose – really very winning indeed already! But on the palate there seems to be just a slight hole in the middle, a lack of sheer fruit weight. Long and vibrato on the finish though until an extremely dry note on the very end. This reminds me of a fortified version of a 2003 right-bank bordeaux.
Anticipated maturity: 2030-2050