How long should I age a bottle of wine?

Posted by Jay Lee & Peter Koff MW on 1st May 2019

People often ask “When is the optimum time to open this bottle?”

Then, I answer, “As soon as possible!”

Certainly some wines taste better when they’ve been laid down for years or even decades. And it’s a great pleasure to have a chance to taste a well-aged wine. However, intentionally laying down wines is not recommended for most consumers. If you have something to gain by laying down a wine, there is also something else to lose. The biggest risk is the possibility that your wine loses its beautiful, aromatic, fruity characteristics. In other words, it gets old without really improving. It can be like cooking pasta; pasta is usually preferred ‘al dente’, but once cooked beyond that point, the quality degrades very rapidly.

If you have proper storage conditions in terms of temperature, humidity, light control and vibration, and if you definitely believe aging your wine will improve it, then you may try. In this case, I would recommend you lay down multiple bottles of the same wine. Then you can open them one a year or one every several months to appreciate its development. If you have only one or two bottles of wine and want to age it to its peak of maturation, there is a risk you will diminish your precious bottles eventually. When I drink a bottle of wine too young, I am slightly wistful about what it might have been at its peak, but I still enjoy it! When you let a wine get too old, the pleasure is largely sacrificed. We age far more wine than is age worthy! I wish I had $10 back for every bottle of wine I let get too old!

Now we should open this!

Better too young than too old.

Click on the bottle below.

Selected by Peter Koff MW


Want to receive complimentary educational posts via email?

Please subscribe below.

Copyright © 2018 All rights reserved.