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¿How much time in barrels should a wine have to reach its ideal point?


Vinos, Datos de Vinos

One of wine’s wonders is its capacity to undergo an aging process that is, without a doubt, a fascinating phenomenon. When compared with other consumable goods, a well-aged wine has the capacity to be transformed into something completely different while it remains in the bottle. Why? There are many different factors that contribute to this transformation, including its origin, grape variety, aging conditions, or production style, among others.

AMOUNT OF TIME A WINE NEEDS TO REACH ITS IDEAL POINT 

Once a wine is stored for aging or bottling, how it’s cellared plays an important role. Is it cellared in a cool, dark place? Where was it, from the time it was produced until it arrived in your hands? Does it have a cork or a screw cap? All of these questions are essential as each can change the characteristics that may influence the aging process, it’s potential, and the development of the wine.  

There’s no number, algorithm, or sign that can allow anyone to know precisely when the perfect moment has arrived, and each person has to decide when the time is right. It’s a big decision: open too soon, and the wine will never reach its peak; open too late, and it will already be passed its peak. 

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HOW TO KNOW WHEN THE TIME IS RIGHT TO OPEN A BOTTLE  

It’s important to understand that the majority of wines are made to be consumed young, and not cellared or aged. There are very few wines made to be aged five or ten years. In order to understand when to open the wine, a wine expert at a specialty shop may be able to help, or investigating the ideal age of your wine specifically. And remember that allowing a wine to age will not necessarily make it better, but it will make it different.  

WHICH WINES HAVE THE GREATEST POTENTIAL FOR AGING?  

In the case of white wines, usually Chardonnay, Riesling, or Semillon, as these varieties have high levels of acidity that can develop richness and complexity, as well as having proven their ability to age over time.  

For red wines, aging changes the astringency of the tannins into smooth but complex notes. Both the tannins and the acids act as preservatives, preventing oxidation and other reactions that may negatively affect changes in flavor. Red wines will also tend to lose some of their brilliance as they age; and white wines tend to augment the intensity of their colors. 

barricas Viña Veramonte
As you can see, there’s no exact way to determine the ideal moment to open a wine, we hope these tips will help you to determine when the right time might be for your favorite wines. Whether it’s been aged for a long time, or bought from the winery after a long aging, the most important thing is to enjoy it fully when you open the bottle.  

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