Wine age is an incredibly important factor that will effect a wine's color, clairity, tannic structure, intensity, and overall quality.
Wines will 'peak' so the name of the aging wine game is to best guess when to finally pop open that cork.
Be forewarned: the majority of wines on the market today, red or white, is meant to be consumed within a couple of years of purchase, at most!
Don't bother cradling your $10 Cabernet for 15 years in hopes of a delicious revolution in the bottle by the time you open it...you're almost guaranteed a flop, because such wines were never crafted to withstand the test of time. They're meant to be enjoyed as are most things in our modern world, right now!
For more info on this, check out our FAQ question: Should I age my wines?
But it's true: some rare wines, mature wines, are out there in the world that do mellow to perfection with age...they're just not stocked on the shelves of your corner liquor store.
In cellared wines, various aromas and flavors fuse together into a unified, blended whole - yet without turning flat or losing any of its original complexity.
In fact, the opposite happens: new dimensions are brought to the forefront, ones that sat dormant in the wines perky, fiesty 'teen years'.
Most likely a wine's age will not be a huge concern for you as you galavant around various vineyards or restaurants, doing wine tastings. (In other words - don't bother guessing a wine's vintage unless you know what you're talking about...or are joking.)
But whenever you do come across that almost mythical well-aged wine - telltale signs are its fused flavors, mellow tones, and sit-up-in-your-seat uniqueness.
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