by Jess Ruciack
With the release of the new vintages of Command Shiraz and Ashmead Cabernet Sauvignon, we have updated our Cellaring Chart – our guide to opening our wines that might be in your cellar/wine fridge. So if you’ve got some older vintages, now might be the time to have a look and make a plan. Want to know whether you should leave your Command Shiraz in the cellar, or if it is time to open and enjoy that Barossa Shiraz? Use our cellaring chart as a guide.
How we’ve put together our Cellaring Chart
We open back vintages for tastings, lunches, dinners and events at Cellar Door so have the opportunity to look at how wines are developing over time. Our cellaring chart is a guide only, working off bottles that we have opened over recent years.
Given the assumption of good cellaring, we have been conservative with our drinking windows as we believe it is better to drink the wine earlier rather than hold it too long and be past its peak. The variability of cellaring conditions, along with personal taste, mean that we cannot guarantee a wine is at its peak, but hope you find this a useful tool.
We’ve used four categories to give an indication of whether it’s time to open or hold:
– Drink now
– At peak – think about drinking now and over next few years
– Cellaring potential 5 + years – still evolving, but will drink very well
– Cellaring potential 10 + years – be patient, this wine will benefit from further aging
Factors that contribute to cellaring
We recommend storing wine in a dark environment with a cool, stable temperature to help the wine develop at its best.
If your wine is under cork, ensure bottles are laying on their side so the cork remains moist. If your bottle has a screw cap, then they can be stored upright if that’s easiest in your storage space!
Serving the wine once you’ve decided to open it
So, you’ve looked at the Cellaring Chart and decided that on the weekend it’s time to buy a great Scotch fillet from the butcher and crack open that 2002 Ode to Lorraine. And you’re wondering how to serve the wine to look it’s best. Do I need to decant it? What temperature should it be?
For more thoughts on both these questions, check out our blogs: