We’ll talk about whether wine gets better with age in this article. the specific justifications for why or why not.
It depends, is the succinct response. We’ll go over all of that and other factors that affect it below.
Does wine really improve with age?
First off, it’s a myth that all types of wine age well and that a bottle of wine improves in flavor with age. It’s not always the case.
Wine does not necessarily taste better or worse as a result of aging; it merely changes. The general consensus is that wines with a low PH, like sangiovese or pinot noir, have a better ability to age.
The tannins in each grape are a major factor in how different wines taste.
Tannins are merely chemicals, also known as polyphenols, that affect a wine’s overall flavor, texture, and bitterness/sweetness.
All wines contain these substances by nature, but red wines contain more of them than white wines.
Wine’s tannin content and composition are influenced by a variety of elements, including grape variety, color, aroma, and tartness.
Both red and white wines emit a very alluring aroma as they age, despite the fact that different factors affect whether the wine tastes (or tastes better) with age. This is dependent on both the acidity and type of grapes used for the fermentation.
Wines change in color, aroma, and tannin as a result of fermentation and malolactic fermentation.
The primary flavors that develop in the wine over time become more pronounced through interactions between the winemaker and the grapes during the vinification process.
Due to the tannin and phenolic compounds that have been exposed to malolactic fermentation, old wine tends to be fairly puffed up when it starts to taste gradually sour or bitter even after several years.
Which is better for aging, a white or
Wines with more tannin are typically better for aging, as we discussed in our other article, “Do wines get better with age.”
Tannin levels in white wines are typically much lower than those in red wines. White wines are therefore not as well suited to aging.
Can you too long?
Yes, if wines are kept for too long, they will eventually go bad. As their tannins start to soften over time as a result of polymerization and aging, they will at least start to lose their fruity flavor.
As a rule of thumb, white wines should be aged for three to five years, whereas red wines can be aged for six to ten years. This is because, generally speaking, white wines cannot be aged for as long as red wines.
Given that, we advise buying a wine fridge because it’s always useful to keep your wines in a cool environment. Read our article on whether purchasing a wine fridge is worthwhile for you and how to choose one if you’re curious but still unsure.
Roseanne is an avid wine enthusiast, and has been our expert wine connoisseur since day 1. She’s extremely informed about all varieties of wine and different types of wine fridges.