Old Vintage – Can I buy Old Wine?
By definition, old vintage wines have been aged in cellars for many years. These wines are often scarce and expensive. However, they can be worth the investment for serious collectors. If you are not a wine collector, but still want to taste the decades-old wine, or gift someone, there are affordable options available. Old vintages can be found at some online retailers, as well as auction sites. With a little research, you could find an old vintage wine that fits both your budget and your taste preferences.
Can vintage wines still be good?
When buying old vintage wines, it is important to do your research. Some factors to consider include:
- the wine’s producer,
- place of origin,
- type of grape,
- quality of the vintage.
Also, one of the most important issues is the proper storage of the wine. The best old vintage wines are those that have been well-maintained and cared for. Since no two bottles age exactly the same way, the wines aged in ideal conditions will have a higher quality and be more enjoyable to drink.
These conditions imply:
- lower temperature – doesn’t have to be too low, but it needs to be stable without temperature oscillations, preferably below 18 degrees C
- ideal humidity – higher humidity helps the cork to stay moist as the dried cork might lose its function to keep the wine safe in the bottle
- dark places with no sun exposure – transparent bottles are sensitive to sunlight so a dark environment is preserving the content
- minimal or no vibration – it’s kinda self-explanatory you do not want your wine to be shaken or disturbed 🙂
- laying the bottle on its side so that the wine is in contact with the cork – is generally accepted as the safest way to keep the natural cork flexible, in its place, and moistened on the inside of the bottle, especially over a prolonged period of time.
Therefore, the wine producer’s ability to cellar its wine is crucial. Such winemakers are making wines with cellaring time in mind. From growing to making, they develop wines that are structured and suitable for aging.
Place of origin and type of the grape
Place of origin is important because where there is a tradition of making wines suitable for aging, there is a much greater chance of doing it right. And there is, of course, the matter of a particular terroir that achieves fruit with unique characteristics and thus abilities to perform great with bottle time.
The type of grape is also an essential factor for a certain vintage to be chosen to archive, but can also be misleading. Just because we know of many examples of the aging potential for Chardonnay, Riesling, or Pinot Noir it doesn’t mean every wine made out of these varieties is suitable for aging. Also, it certainly doesn’t rule out all of the other varieties which are rarely perceived as age-worthy. Graševina for instance, otherwise known as Welschriesling, can develop beautifully when aged properly in selected vintages.
Quality of the vintage and experience in crafting old vintage wines
So, what makes the difference every time is the quality of the vintage. Variations of the vintage directly influence the aging potential of the wine made. That is the reason you can easily find all the vintage charts of the most famous appellations commonly kept in wine libraries of collectors all over the world.
Of course, everything is important. A winery experienced in making and preserving old vintages can better recognize the wine’s potential to age. Occasionally, a vintage that seems superb in its youth might not be ideal for aging and vice versa. The previous tradition is stories of successes and misses. It takes a skilled winemaker to make Graševina for example, so structured it can prove the test of time.
What are the benefits of old vintages?
There are many benefits to old vintages. First, these wines have unique flavor profiles that you cannot find in younger wines. Second, old vintage wines can be a great investment. If you purchase a wine that is rare or in high demand, the value and the price of the wine may increase over time. Third, drinking a specific old vintage is a great way to celebrate a special occasion such as a jubilee birthday or simply impress your friends and family. Finally, old vintages can be a fun and interesting hobby. If you enjoy trying new things and exploring different flavors, old vintage wines may be the perfect hobby for you!
How to get old vintage wines?
Old vintages may be rare or unavailable for purchase, but they can be enjoyed through wine tastings or by special order. If you’re interested in trying old vintage wines, you can attend a special wine tasting or contact a winery to see if they offer this type of wine. You may also be able to find old vintages for sale online or at specialty stores.
For example, it is possible to order an old vintage wine offer from a traditional producer with a historical cellar keeping their wine library from hundreds of years ago. Prices vary between approximately 200€ for a more recent vintage to 7500€ for a 1947 vintage bottle of Traminac from Ilok.
Ilok cellars are well known for their old vintage wines. These are strictly available in the cellar for now, but they could be shipped using Wine & More logistics. Ilok Cellar’s old vintage wines are shipped under controlled conditions.
These old vintage wines are some of the finest that Croatia has to offer and are sure to impress any wine lover, especially a more experienced one.
Table: Old vintage wines of Ilok Cellar available for purchase
The majority of this collection of Ilok Cellars survived the Croatian War of Independence fought from 1991 to 1995. This is particularly interesting because the Ilok Cellar was occupied since the beginning of the war. Before leaving the premises of their historical winery in Ilok, Croatian winemakers sealed the archive wines behind a wall. They took extra effort to camouflage it so the wines were never discovered by occupying forces.
This true story is yet another example of the passion and dedication that Croatian winemakers have for their craft. The old vintage wines from Ilok Cellar are a testament to the skill and artistry of these individuals.
So, if you’re looking for a unique and special wine, be sure to check out the old vintage wine selection of Ilok Cellars. You won’t be disappointed!