Suggestions for Maximum Wine Enjoyment              

 To maximize your enjoyment of purchased wines, the following information on the ageing and storing of your purchased wines may prove useful.

 Ageing As with all wines, some degree of ageing in the bottle for purchased wines is beneficial, allowing the full complexity and intensity of the aromas and flavors to come through. Red wines become richer, as the initial fruit flavors mellow and the astringent tannins relax, contributing to the body and character. White wines showing high acid levels will soften over time, revealing wonderful textures and flavors.

 Components of wines differ by variety or blend, and thus react differently to ageing. Some wines require longer ageing periods than others. For example:

 

More ageing

Some ageing

Little ageing

Red wines

Cabernet Sauvignon

Merlot

Beajolais

 

Barolo

Pinot Noir

Blush wines

 

Barbaresco

Valpolicella

 

 

 

 

 

White wines

Chardonnay/Semillion

Sauvignon Blanc

Liebfraumilch

 

Pouilly- fuisse

Johannisberg Riesling

Piesporter

 

Viogonier

 

 

 

Different factors exert influence on the rate of ageing and can contribute to better ageing potential:

 

Storage

A very big factor, addressed in more detail below.

Cork Quality

The longer and less porous the cork, the better the oxygen barrier, extending ageing potential.

Ullage

The amount of head space in the bottle.

Sulphite level

Higher concentrations protect from oxidation.

 

Storage:  Storage plays a big role in the ageing process and can make or break a finished wine. Generally white wines, sweet wines and champagne above all- are more frail than reds. Grape variety can also make a difference for example, Cabernet Sauvignon wines are generally more resilient than Pinot Noirs. However, always minimizing the risks involved in bottle storage- heat, light, lack of humidity and constant movement- is the wisest plan.

Temperature: The ideal cellar temperature is 45 55 deg. F.  Wines can be stored up to 68 deg. F but note that wine matures much more rapidly at higher temperatures. At lower temperatures, slower maturation allows more complexity to develop. Constant temperature is the key chronic fluctuations should be avoided.

Light:    Sunlight and ultraviolet light are as bad for wine as excessive heat, but are problems usually much easier to overcome. Though most wines are protected by colored glass bottles, place wines in areas away from light or cover them.

Humidity:    Some degree of humidity is beneficial to ensure that the exposed end of the cork does not dry out and allow oxygen into the wine. Thus, beware of air conditioners that suck the moisture out of the air. Ideally, relative humidity should be between 69 and 75 %.

Movement:  Wine does not take well to constant movement and vibration, thus a secure storage space is necessary. Secure storage should also mean storing bottles horizontally, allowing constant contact of the wine with the cork and preventing it from drying out and letting air into the wine.

Information provided as a complimentary FYI