The English, with their bone-numbing climate, have long enjoyed a taste for fine port. There’s not an Oxbridge college whose cellars aren’t bulging with casks of the warming wine. And precious few law dons who haven’t experienced the pleasures of port on a cold winter’s day. Which is why, perhaps, here in America, port has been dismissed by some as an English affectation.

Fortunately, the past decade has witnessed a renaissance in the port industry. In no small measure, that’s due to the 1990s cigar boomlet. After all, what’s a good cigar without a glass of fine port? And what’s port without the pomp and circumstance? Certainly, there’s nothing quite like the gleam of a cut glass decanter and Waterford crystal goblets. All the better when the stopper’s been pulled and a stream of dark red, perfectly aged old wine begins running down the side of the glass.

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