Vintageport.se

Est. 2011

Croft

Croft & C:a

Founded 1588
Owner Fladgate Partnership (Taylor-Fonseca Group)
Vineyards Quinta da Roêda
Vintage Port Brands Croft, Quinta da Roêda

Croft is one of the oldest houses in the trade. Since 1581 the monopoly of the city’s commerce had been held by the Merchants Company of York. In 1588, Henry Thompson, member of a prominent Yorkshire family, was admitted to the Company and set up a successful business trading in wine. This firm was to become the Port house in 1678. The Croft family were also distinguished members of the merchant community in York and the Thompson and Croft families certainly knew each other. However it was not until later that the Crofts would become involved in the Thompson business. By 1647 the Thompson company had acquired wine cellars in Bordeaux and had also established itself in Hull, London and Amsterdam. In 1654, England and Portugal had been close trading partners by a new treaty which awarded special privileges to English merchants trading in Portugal including entitlement to lower duties. As a result the Thompson family shifted their focus from France, which was frequently at war with Britain, to Portugal. By that time the firm was led by Richard Thompson who was responsible for transforming the family firm into a Port wine company. In 1707, Richard Thompson began a partnership with two Irishmen, Thomas Phayre and Nathaniel Bradley, the trading name changing frequently as partners joined, retired or died until the two Irishmen left the partnership and were replaced by a new partner, Benjamin Tilden, after which it adopted the name Thompson & Tilden.

The Croft family first became involved in wine shipping through their connection with the distinguished family Thompsons of York when Thomas Croft married Frances, daughter of Sir Stephen Thompson in 1681.

The Port shipping partnership resulted in that their third son, John Croft, was to join the established in 1736 at the age of 42. Shortly afterwards the company became known as Tilden, Thompson and Croft. John Croft remained a bachelor until his death in 1762. The second John Croft was well established in Oporto and active in their Port wine business, but the Crofts never lost touch with their Yorkshire origins. In his treatise, John Croft describes himself as ‘Member of the Factory at Oporto and Wine Merchant of York’. John Croft assured himself a place in history by his ‘Treatise on the wines of Portugal’, a full and detailed work published in 1788. The publication of his Treatise firmly placed the Croft family at the forefront of the Port-producing community based in Oporto. His nephew, John Croft III was born in York but spent most of his life in Portugal, remaining a partner from 1777 to 1800. It was during his time as partner that the firm produced the earliest known Vintage Port, the Croft 1781. This was followed by Vintage Ports from 1784, 1785 and 1786.

Five sons of John’s brother, Stephen, all entered the Port wine business and several went to live in Portugal. The fourth son, Thomas Croft, joined the partnership just three years after the Port wine district had been demarcated by the Marquês de Pombal. Thomas was a man of great ability and influence and the Croft family had by now become very well established and prosperous and 1827 Croft & Co. had become the fourth largest Port shipper.

The family returned to England in the nineteenth century, after the Peninsular Wars, and now there are no longer any Crofts in the firm. Nevertheless, the family maintained its affection for the fortified wines of the Douro and the late Percy Croft, who died in 1935, is credited with the famous words: ‘Any time not spent drinking Port is a waste of time.’

In 1911 the House of Croft was acquired by the Gilbeys, the distinguished English wine trade family.1952 International Destillers & Vintners which is a part of Grand Metropolitan Group acquired Croft and since 2001 it is owned and run by descendants of two old Port wine families, the Yeatman’s and Fladgate’s.

Quinta da Roêda.
It is from its own famous Quinta da Roêda, in the centre of the Douro valley, that Croft relies on its port production. The quinta was purchased by Croft in 1875.

Croft Vintages:1781, 1784, 1785, 1786, 1812, 1813, 1820, 1824, 1835, 1851, 1869, 1870, 1872, 1873, 1875, 1878, 1881, 1884, 1885, 1887, 1890, 1892, 1894, 1896, 1897, 1900, 1904, 1905, 1908, 1911, 1912, 1914, 1915, 1917, 1920, 1922, 1924, 1927, 1931, 1935, 1942, 1945, 1947, 1948, 1950, 1955, 1956, 1957, 1960, 1963, 1966, 1970, 1975, 1977, 1982, 1985, 1991, 1994, 2000, 2003, 2007, 2009, 2011
Quinta da Roeda Vintages:1967, 1970, 1978, 1980, 1982, 1983, 1987, 1995, 1997, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2012

Vintage Port tasting notes:

HouseCroftVintage1914
ColourBeautiful mature yellow in colour.Number of tastings1
BouquetVanilla, menthol, toffee, honey, candy, the and coffee in the nose.Score range17.25 - 17.25
TasteMedium body. Mature, peaking and maybe a little old but elegant and balance. Menthol and much more in taste. Astonishing! Lovely and quite long and attractive finish. Unbelievable port from this year.Average score
Last tasted25th December 2014Point this date17.25
CommentAt home with the family An extra label on the bottle are saying: This bottle of Crofts 1914 vintage Port was shipped by pipe and bottled at Chester’s Brewery Co, Ardwick for the manager Mr George Smi
It has not been rebottled./ G. Hoban 1989
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1927
ColourVery thin mature tawny. A bit cloudy.Number of tastings4
BouquetLiquorice, delicious but some unbalanced alcohol in the nose.Score range14.50 - 15.75
TasteMedium body but tasty. Burned sugar in flavour. A tired old port but light and still drinkable.Average score15.00
Last tasted20th September 2007Point this date14.75
CommentAt the Wine Society 18% tasting in Malmö.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1935
ColourYellow, almost tawny in colour.Number of tastings1
BouquetToffee, crème caramel and burned sugar in the nose.Score range16.50 - 16.50
TasteMedium body. Mature with burned sugar in flavour. Elegant, balanced and quite complex with a lovely finish. An old nice port indeed.Average score
Last tasted20th September 2012Point this date16.50
CommentAt the Wine Society 18% tasting in Malmö.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1944
ColourYellow mature in colour.Number of tastings1
BouquetPharmacy, ether and camphor in the nose.Score range16.50 - 16.50
TasteMedium body. Mature and peaking. Of course old but quite balanced, complex and attractive. Pharmacy and camphor in taste. Quite long and lovely finish.Average score
Last tasted20th March 2014Point this date16.50
CommentAt the Wine Society 18% tasting in Malmö.
This bottle was given to the member of 18%, Ander G. Åkesson Collection, who arranged this tasting and was a gift to him in Oporto due to private reasons.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1945
ColourBeautiful mature in colour.Number of tastings2
BouquetEnormous complex, elegant bouquet of coffee, tea, cinnamon and liquorice.Score range17.90 - 18.50
TasteCoffee and liquorice in flavour. Full-bodied, attractive and a long, long never ending finish. Marvellous port!Average score18.20
Last tasted11th March 1999Point this date17.90
CommentAt the Wine Society 18% tasting in Malmö.
TastersSAI, JB
HouseCroftVintage1950
ColourLovely mature and tawny in colour.Number of tastings2
BouquetToffee, fudge and burned candy in the nose.Score range15.50 - 17.50
TasteMedium bodied. Sweet. Mature and complex port. Toffee and fudge in taste. Still attractive and exciting with a long finish. Drink up and enjoy this port.Average score16.38
Last tasted27th February 2014Point this date17.50
CommentAt the Wine Society 18% tasting in Malmö.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1955
ColourMature, yellow quite beautiful in colour.Number of tastings3
BouquetComplex and attractive nose with toffee, Christmas spiciness, roses, violets, burned sugar and crème caramel.Score range15.00 - 17.00
TasteMedium-body. Mature and peaking. Quite sweet but balanced and very complex port. Crème caramel, roses and spiciness in flavour. Excellent port with a long, attractive and never ended finish.Average score16.33
Last tasted16th November 2017Point this date17.00
CommentAt the Wine Society 18% Great Tasting in Malmö.
This bottle belongs to Gerda and Ole Vesterdal’s Private Collection.

In 2017 this vintage took part in a Great Tasting in the Wine Society 18%. For points and ranking see Great Tastings.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1960
ColourBeautiful mature and quite impressive in colour.Number of tastings13
BouquetGenerous and complex bouquet of chocolate, cacao, pharmacy and crème caramel.Score range16.50 - 17.50
TasteMedium body. Mature and peaking. Cacao and burned sugar in taste. Balanced and complex. Fairly sweet and a long lovely and very attractive finish. Wonderful portAverage score16.97
Last tasted30th January 2014Point this date17.25
CommentAt home with the family.
This is a very good 1960.

In 2007 this vintage took part in a Great Tasting in the Wine Society 18%. For points and ranking see Great Tastings.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1963
ColourMature yellow almost tawny in colour.Number of tastings16
BouquetFudge, toffee, ginger and old grocery shop in the nose.Score range15.75 - 17.25
TasteQuite full-bodied. Mature and at its peak. Toffee in taste. Fairly sweet, elegant and balanced with a delicious and quite long finish.Average score16.48
Last tasted21st November 2013Point this date16.25
CommentAt the Wine Society 18% Great Tasting in Malmö.

In 2005 this vintage took part in a Great Tasting in the Wine Society 18%. For points and ranking see Great Tastings.
In 2013 this vintage took part in a Great Tasting in the Wine Society 18%. For points and ranking see Great Tastings.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1966
ColourBeautiful, yellow mature in colour.Number of tastings12
BouquetVery elegant and classic style. Complex bouquet of butterscotch, cream candy, fudge and old grocery shop.Score range16.50 - 17.00
TasteQuite full-bodied. Sweet. Mature and at its peak. Butterscotch and candy in taste. For some of us very elegant with a long and quite attractive finish.Average score17.01
Last tasted31st December 2016Point this date17.00
CommentAt home with the family.
1 bottle has been defect.

In 2006 this vintage took part in a Great Tasting in the Wine Society 18%. For points and ranking see Great Tastings.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1970
ColourQuite dark in colour but with a yellow rim.Number of tastings6
BouquetComplex crème caramel, spring flowers, roses and a bit peppery in the nose.Score range15.75 - 17.25
TasteFull-bodied. Mature and peaking but may improve a little. Liquorice in the taste. Elegant and complex with a lovely finish.Average score16.68
Last tasted23rd May 2016Point this date17.25
CommentAt the Danish Port Wine Club est. 1981 tasting in Copenhagen.

In 2008 this vintage took part in a Great Tasting in the Wine Society 18%. For points and ranking see Great Tastings.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1975
ColourMature yellow in colour.Number of tastings5
BouquetComplex old grocery shop and ginger in the nose. Quite generous.Score range15.50 - 16.50
TasteMedium bodied. Sweet. Fully mature and at its peak. Anise in taste. Quite agreeable and attractive and quite long finish.Average score15.79
Last tasted1st March 2012Point this date16.50
CommentAt the Danish Port Wine Club est. 1981 tasting in Copenhagen.

In 2006 this vintage took part in a Great Tasting in the Wine Society 18%. For points and ranking see Great Tastings.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1977
ColourBeautiful, mature yellow in colour.Number of tastings12
BouquetVery complex dark chocolate, candy, toffee, crème caramel and old grocery shop in the nose.Score range15.00 - 17.25
TasteFull-bodied. Excellent, matured and peaking. Will keep for a long time. Cacao, toffee and crème caramel in taste. Perfect balanced and very complex port with an attractive and wonderful long finish. This is a very good port indeed.Average score16.14
Last tasted9th December 2017Point this date17.25
CommentIn our Private Wine Club.
1 bottle has been defect.

In 2010 this vintage took part in a Great Tasting in the Wine Society 18%. For points and ranking see Great Tastings.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1982
ColourQuite beautiful, yellow mature almost tawny in colour.Number of tastings9
BouquetCrème caramel, ginger-bread, cacao, fudge, liquorice and toffee in the nose.Score range14.50 - 16.25
TasteMedium body. Mature and peaking. Will not be better. Liquorice and toffee in taste. Easy to drink and like. Quite dry. Elegant port with a lovely and quite attractive finish.Average score15.33
Last tasted20th November 2014Point this date16.25
CommentAt the Wine Society 18% Great Tasting in Malmö.

In 2014 this vintage took part in a Great Tasting in the Wine Society 18%. For points and ranking see Great Tastings.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1985
ColourYellow mature in colour.Number of tastings4
BouquetComplex with toffee, liquorice, cacao and old grocery shop in the nose.Score range16.50 - 16.50
TasteMedium body. Still some very soft tannin. Will probably be better! Roasted nuts, cacao and liquorice in the taste. Elegant and quite complex with a balanced and very long finish.Average score16.50
Last tasted20th January 2017Point this date16.50
CommentAt the Restaurant “AG” in Stockholm.
One bottle has been defect.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1991
ColourDark blue with a yellow rim.Number of tastings4
BouquetMinty and pharmaceutical nose.Score range14.50 - 16.50
TasteMedium body. Tasty and not quite mature yet but with an excellent finish. Not a long runner.Average score15.33
Last tasted26th March 2007Point this date15.25
CommentAt the Danish Port Wine Club est. 1981 tasting in Copenhagen.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage1994
ColourStill black in colour.Number of tastings1
BouquetVery fruity and black cherry but still juicy in the nose.Score range15.25 - 15.25
TasteFull bodied. Lots of tannin. Very fruity in flavour. Very immature and promising. A long runner. Long exciting finish.Average score
Last tasted11th November 1999Point this date15.25
CommentAt the Wine Society 18% tasting in Malmö.
We think this will be a lovely wine.
TastersSAI, JB
HouseCroftVintage2000
ColourStill rather dark but with a yellow rim.Number of tastings1
BouquetSome fruit with berry notes, toffee and liquorice.Score range16.25 - 16.25
TasteMedium bodied. Some nice quite silky tannins. Fruity in flavour and attractive liquorice. Long attractive and very balanced finish..Average score
Last tasted3rd June 2017Point this date16.25
CommentAt Restaurant Sofa in Maastricht, Netherlands.
This bottle had been opened for about three weeks.
TastersSS
HouseCroftVintage2003
ColourDark blue in colour.Number of tastings4
BouquetMulberry, strawberry, blackberry and much more in the nose.Score range15.00 - 15.75
TasteAlmost full-bodied. Lots of tannin and very fruity. Dark berry and more in flavour. Immature and maybe hard to appreciate now. Wonderful finish. Will be great when mature!Average score15.38
Last tasted13th April 2010Point this date15.75
CommentIn Croft’s lodge at the trip to Oporto – Duoro with the Port Wine Club est. 1981 in Copenhagen.
TastersSAI, JB, SS
HouseCroftVintage2011
ColourBlack almost black in colour.Number of tastings1
BouquetStill very juicy and fruity in the nose.
TasteMedium body. Lots of tannin and loaded with fruit. Very promising and attractive with a lovely finish.
Last tasted12th September 2014Rating this dateImpressive/ Very Impressive
CommentIn Croft’s lodge at the trip to Oporto – Duoro with the Port Wine Club est. 1981 in Copenhagen.

Port so young we evaluate only as : Good – Very good- Impressive – Very Impressive
TastersSAI, JB

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