George Sandeman and his 20 yr old tawny – video
Sandeman’s 20 yr old Tawny port recently won the International Wine and Spirits Competition’s best port in the world for 2011. The annual competition picks the best wines in the world in various categories every year.
Sandeman was established in 1790 by Scotsman George Sandeman, who founded his port and sherry trading company in Tom’s Coffee House, in the City of London. Coincidentally, The Crypt at Ely’s Place where the Sandeman dinner I attended was held, is but a stone’s throw away from the site of the original Tom’s. The Crypt is over 800 yrs old and was the site of a 5 day wedding banquet for Henry the VIII, although there was some disagreement around the dinner table as to which wife it was, either Anne Boleyn or Catherina of Aragon, the mystery was not solved over copious glasses of port.
Sandeman became part of the huge Portuguese wine conglomerate Sogrape in the 1970’s but a member of the family is still head of the house to this day. The 7th generation of Sandeman’s, George, became Chairman of the house in 1991 and it was my pleasure to have a chat with him after dinner about what makes 20 year old Tawny so special and why it’s one of George’s favourites…