Wine And Time
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How Long Is Long Enough?
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Choosing Wines To Age
How Much Wine To Buy?

How much can you afford? There is rarely too much wine in a cellar, and if there is, there will always be someone to buy it. The great auction houses regularly sell off the surplus contents of cellars large and small.

Wines that last longest need most space: a serious red bordeaux, for example, may not reach its peak for eight or ten years, but may stay at or near its best for a decade after that. If you expect to drink three bottles a year of such wine, you need three dozen. If a wine a red burgundy say, of moderate quality is expected to improve for four years and then stay at its best for another four, then a dozen will do.

For most wine lovers, space and money will impose constraints. Think of your wine collection, or cellar, as having three parts: day-to day wines; the "working" fine win selection; and maturing wines. Th aim should be to have a "working cellar holding enough mature wine to cover your foreseeable needs dinner parties, family occasions and surplus for impromptu pleasure. Thirdly there are the long-term wines: those which you are nursing towards maturity. Eventually, it is t be hoped, these wines will start to flow into the "working" cellar, avoiding the need for outside purchases - except for more young wine to provide continuity.

 
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