Storing Red Wine

Only those red wines with sufficient tannins and acidity will last more than two or three years, which rules out lighter wines such as Beaujolais, Côtes du Rhône and most of the cheaper red wines, such as those from Central Europe. Generally, wines costing less than around £7.00 are unlikely to stand up to longer storage. Among the best bets for red wines suitable for laying down are:

  • Red Bordeaux: usually only those costing more than £10.
  • Red Burgundy: only Premier Cru level or above.
  • Northern Rhône wines: Hermitage, Côte-Rotie and Cornas.
  • Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot based wines.
  • Top end Chiantis, Barolos and Barbarescos from Italy.
  • Top end Riojas from Spain.
  • Vintage port: not LBV, ruby or tawny ports.

The truly ageworthy wines are made from the noble-red varieties: Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Nebbiolo, Sangiovese and, to a lesser extent, Merlot and Pinot Noir. Such wines should not only keep for 10 years, but they should evolve positively in that time, gaining complexity and subtlety as they mature.

      Storing White Wine