Aging red wine can be a very rewarding process. Although most wines are ready to drink young, there’s also many cases where aging red wine can help bring out the best in the wine. A balanced wine is roughly equal parts fruit, acidity, tannins, and alcohol. If the balance is off in a young wine, it often balances out after aging over time through a series of chemical interactions that makes wine taste smoother.
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Make sure to find our Part 1 of How to Age and Store Wine so you know the fundamentals of “how,” not just the “why” and “what.”
Cab Sauv has a wide range of variability depending on vintage, region, and many other factors. Look for Cabs with a deep color, that’s higher in acidity and tannins if you plan to age it a while.
Merlot actually ages very well, even though they tend to be lighter in body. Aging merlot often produces a softer mouth feel with a more tobacco smoke flavor. A great place to look for merlot to age is the right bank of Bordeaux, in France.
Especially from the Rioja region, tempranillo is an amazing grape to age long term.
Like Tempranillo, this is another varietal to age long term. This wine often has spicy acidity when it’s young, and over time it mellows out to produce figgy, nutty notes.
Let us know what wines you’ve had success aging or plan on aging!