The main advantages of making a Selection (with Grape Skins) kit is the depth and complexity of the final product, as well as the cellaring opportunities that come with it. These kits are designed to be great at about 6-9 months, but continue to evolve in proper cellar conditions for several years. That begs the question – how do you know when to drink it?
Let’s start with a taste comparison of New Vs Old: Selection Italian Brunello with Grape Skins
Younger (2015) – Appealing fruity nose: cherry/currant/plum, spice and plum. Taste: Plum/currant and dark cherry, gripping tannins, a little astringent, spice leading to a strong oak finish. Overview – very fruity nose which keeps building as it opens up, lots of fruit in the taste with a strong oak finish. In profile but young. (tannins and oak all up front)
Older (2012) – Moderate nose that took longer to open up. Oak/spice, leather – leading into cherry and spice with a slight fruit finish. Taste: Sweet cherry and dark plum or currant – to spice and oak, back to cherry. Moderate tannins, balanced and mellow with layers of complexity, leaving the mouth watering for more.
What does all that mean for deciding when to drink your wine?
Personally, I LOVE when the wine has a lot of sweet fruit character in the nose and in the taste. That makes the quenching quaffability of the younger wine hard to resist, even with the harsher tannins. Having said that, the complexity in the way the flavours present themselves and change in the mouth from the start of the sip to the end with the finish, make the older wine incredibly appealing. Wine is a journey, and you should drink your wine when it has evolved in your cellar to the place that YOU love it best. With a great cellaring kit, try a bottle at about 6 months, and then every few months thereafter. Make some notes (with enough detail that makes sense to you) to see how the wine changes with time. If you get to a place where you love the taste of your wine, drink more of it then. Sometimes a wine will change in a way that is unexpected or disappoints, but surprisingly can come around to something even better than expected in the end. Saving a couple of bottles for a few years down the road can be hard, but very rewarding.
Alcohol by Volume 13.0-13.5% Body Med-Full, Oak Heavy, Sweetness None