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The Elderton Wines Blog

Open That Bottle Night 2023


This Saturday is Open That Bottle Night. The point of this wine movement around the world is that we shouldn’t save our ‘good’ wines for a special occasion – that we should enjoy them when they’re still drinking well.

How many times have we all said ‘we can’t open that tonight, it’s too good – we need to save it’, or ‘we’ve put that away for a special occasion’…  Has that occasion ever come?

So why not make an occasion! Gather your friends or family for a lovely dinner get together, and open that bottle. Make some special memories, and the wine will be enjoyed all the more for it!

Where did Open That Bottle Night start?

Open That Bottle Night was started by Dorothy J. Gaiter and John Brecher in around 2000. Dorothy and John were wine writers and journalists at The Wall Street Journal at the time. They wanted to encourage readers to open a significant bottle and share their stories.

It is celebrated on the last Saturday in February each year.

Such wise words from Dorothy:

“It was clear that, indeed, everyone—whether they had one bottle in the house or an entire collection—had that one wine that was always too special to open. You know how it is: Oh, let’s save this for a special occasion; and then no occasion is special enough; and the bottle just sits there, dying. As one OTBN celebrant once put it, these are wines that people are literally loving to death.

There’s sentiment and romance out there—much more than you might think from reading the daily news—and we think OTBN taps into that. In addition, there is just so much cant and snootiness surrounding wine. OTBN gives people a license to enjoy a bottle of wine for what it really is: an enjoyable, tasty beverage with some really good memories attached to it.”

Open That Bottle Night 2023 with Elderton

Allister has decided to open the museum and take home a 2013 Western Ridge Grenache Carignan:

The 2013 Western Ridge Grenache Carignan will make a welcome return to our family dinner table as it is the perfect wine to transition into autumn. The wine is medium to full bodied, and would pair with everything from roast chicken or game, or according to my own plan – gourmet sausages on the BBQ. I recommend bringing the temperature of this wine down to 12 – 15 degrees to see it at its absolute best.

Allister Ashmead of Elderton Wines with museum release wine 2013 Western Ridge Grenache Carignan

Cameron has chosen the 2012 Ashmead Cabernet Sauvignon:

I am very much looking forward to cracking a bottle of the 2012 Ashmead Cabernet. Pair it with a crispy Greek lamb salad with lots fresh greens and super crusty bread. 2012 was generally regarded as one of those perfect vintages and after a decade in the bottle the wine should melt in the mouth with that crispy lamb shoulder that has been charred on the BBQ.

Elderton Wines Ashmead Cabernet Sauvignon Barossa

Enjoy your own wines and don’t forget to share your stories!

As Open That Bottle Night approaches, we hope you’ve got some inspiration to open that bottle you’ve got waiting for a special occasion that hasn’t quite come yet.

If you do, we’d love to hear from you! You can email or share on socials and use the hashtag #openthatbottlenight.

Shop museum wines on our website

Each vintage release of wines from our Exceptional Sites and Elite Single Vineyards ranges has an allocation put into our museum, on site at Elderton, so that we have a collection of vintages for reference, and so we can check to see how the wines are developing.

Rather than keeping these wines all to ourselves, select vintages are available on our website. So you can enjoy these wines at home, too.




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