British brand Portafortuna has released the ‘first’ fortified spirit made with a blend of XO brandy and vintage Port.
Founder Owen James conceived the idea for Portafortuna XO in 2014 at a dinner with friends in Milan, Italy.
It is said that glasses of random drinks were raised and used to make the toast: “Portafortuna, Buona Fortuna a Tutti”, which translates to mean “with my lucky charm, I wish good luck and fortune to everyone”.
The group of friends could not agree on a single drink worthy of being called a ‘lucky charm’ to be used for the toast, and so James challenged himself to create a drink worthy of toasting to good luck and good fortune.
“Portafortuna XO brings together some of the best qualities of vintage Port and XO brandy to compete against higher-strength spirits and premium liqueurs without being troubled by excessive duty,” commented James.
“It has been a hard eight years trying to identify the right Port and brandy that will blend without reaction. Only a mature Port of vintage standard and a brandy aged to XO are stable enough to allow their natural flavours to be augmented.”
The spirit is described as ‘a marriage of sophisticated, mature alcohols’ and offers top notes of dark chocolate, burnt orange, vanilla and black cherry.
The fortified spirit rests at 27.5% ABV, having been created with a combination of 40% ABV XO brandy and 20% ABV vintage Port.
“The taste has an enchanting back story and the USP of the final blend threatens to rewrite the European classification of alcohol styles,” James added.
“Portafortuna XO offers a new and different taste experience, I expect it to become an internationally significant after-dinner drink.”
To fully appreciate the expression, it is recommended served at room temperature in a large Burgundy-style wine glass.
Portafortuna XO is presented in 700ml bottles and is available to purchase via portafortuna.co.uk for an RRP of £38.50 (US$45.66).
Last month, St-Rémy debuted a Port cask-finished brandy as part of the brand’s Cask Finish Collection.