Home > Vintage Port - Known and Believed Fakes

Vintage Port - Known and Believed Fakes

The world of vintage port is no more immune to counterfeit than other wines and goods. Unfortunately in recent years there seem to have been an increase in the number of fake bottles of vintage port being offered for sale both privately and at auction. In an effort to help port enthusiasts from purchasing fake bottles, the following are some known and believed fake bottles of port of which the author is aware. If you see any bottles matching these for sale, then beware (and please let us know where you have seen them). Also please let us know, ideally with images, about any other believed fake bottles you may encounter. I can be contacted by email at hallarn.com ( pw01@ that domain ) or as "PhilW" on ThePortForum.

2008 Tasting, US

At a US tasting in 2006, a bottle labelled as 1933 Croft was opened. Croft is not believed to have declared a port in 1933, however sometimes bottles from non-released years do become available. Note the odd selo and the unusual shape bottle. On opening, the bottle was found to be sealed with a plastic topped T-stopper, and the [revolting smelling] contents did not appear to be vintage port.

2009 Tasting, UK

At a UK tasting in 2009, a bottle labelled as 1955 Noval Nacional was opened. However, the cork did not include the cruicial word "Nacional", and it is believed that this was in fact a Noval 1955 which had been fraudulently relabelled. Images show the bottle, label and cork (there was no further lettering on cork beyond that visible in this image).

2013 Auction, Geneva

The following bottles appeared at an auction in Geneva as part of a larger number of old port bottles. These, and other bottles which appeared at the same auction, are believed to be fake.

2014 Auction, Germany

The following bottle, believed to be fake, appeared at a German auction.

2015 Online auction, Germany

The following bottle appeared on an online auction site in Germany in 2015. For many reasons, it is believed to be fake.

2016 Auction, Portugal

The following bottles appeared at auction in Portugal in 2016. At least one of these bottles is known to be fake, and there are strong indications that many, if not all, of these bottles are fake. This is certainly now believed to be the case by at least two of the purchasers of these bottles.

2016 Auction, UK

The following bottle was auctioned in the UK in 2016, and for a number of reasons is strongly believed to be a fake.