Aging Guidelines for Wine
Say you're new to wine, and you go into your local wine shop. You see a
last-year Zinfandel, and you recognize the label as belonging to a
winery everyone's raving about. You grab a bottle for your special
dinner that night. At the table, you pop the cork, pour a glass, and
promptly decide this is the most awful thing you've ever tasted. You
find out the next day that the wine should have been 'laid down' for
5-8 years before it reached its peak. How would you know?
This chart should help wine lovers of all types quickly identify good
ranges of age for a type of wine. It's just a guideline, of course.
Every winery has different methods, and low-quality wines of a type
(say Pinot Noir) won't last nearly as long as high quality wines of
the exact same type. Also, wines from good years last much longer
than wines from poor years.
Also, keep in mind that part of what helps a wine age is the Sulfites in it. Sulfites are natural preservatives found on all grapes. If you buy a low-sulfite wine, it will tend not to last for very long.
Given those factors, this chart will help give you a general impression about wine types. It should help you determine if you grab a current bottle off the shelf at
the wine store, is this a wine you should drink tonight or ten years
Wine Type||Aging Suggestion|
|Port, non-vintage, tawny, etc.
far more for some
Learn how Wines Age
Wine Basics Main Page