"Very old white port" typically refers to white port wines that have been aged for an extended period, often several decades. Unlike most white wines, which are typically consumed relatively young, white port can develop complex flavors and aromas with extended aging.
The aging process for white port involves maturation in oak barrels, where it interacts with the wood, allowing for oxidation and concentration of flavors. This results in a golden or amber-colored wine with rich, nutty, and caramelized characteristics, along with nuances of dried fruits and spices.
The term "very old" indicates that the white port has been aged significantly longer than standard bottlings. These rare and sought-after white ports are often prized for their depth, complexity, and ability to showcase the unique terroir of the Douro Valley in Portugal.