Asking for what year was the best for red wine is question so common that it is often used in TV shows and movies. At first, it may not make much sense that one year would be superior to others, but the truth is that there are a lot of factors that go into the taste of red wine. The year itself is not so much important as the environmental conditions that played a role in shaping the taste of the grapes themselves. However, there are several factors that play a role in finding the best year for red wine.
Factors that Affect Wine Quality
Just like other alcoholic beverages such as whiskey, wine needs to be aged so that the flavors settle into a rich, delicious taste. The discovery that aging promotes the taste of the wine was probably accidental. But since then, many wines are aged at the winery before being distributed to the public for consumption. Young wines have a rich flavor that is often sharp, although one benefit is that the healthy antioxidants found in wine are at their most potent.
Old wines that are past their primes have gone flat and no longer have the supple taste that they once offered. Of course, how the wine is stored helps with the aging process as well. Therefore, when ordering a glass of wine, it’s important to consider its age.
The environmental conditions that were present when the grapes were harvested is another important factor in choosing which red wine is the best. The elements that work against the taste of the wine include growing conditions that were dry, too cold, or too hot. Grapes are rather sensitive in terms of their environment which is why they can only be grown in certain locations around the world. Ideally, the grapes should have enjoyed good, seasonable weather with plenty of precipitation and not too much sunlight.
This is another consideration as what might have been a bad year in France may have been an excellent one for California. So, you will need to know when the best wines were produced in the vineyards in the major wine-growing areas of the world.
The Best Year for Red Wine
You should do a little research about your favorite wines that includes what most people consider the best year. However, there are some practical guidelines you can follow if you are not fully familiar the exact type of wine you are choosing.
Within the past 30 years, the best years were 1999 and 2001 thanks to the remarkable growing seasons that were enjoyed in both years. You cannot go wrong if you choose either year for your wine.
2001 and 2003 were also fine years for Red Burgundy wines. The growing seasons in this part of Europe were not ideal, but did work to the favor of the winemakers.
8 to 10 Years
For most red wines, this is the length of time they need to spend in the bottle before they are ready to be consumed. About a decade represents enough time for the sharpness of the taste to dull so you can fully enjoy the wine.