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Mon Feb 11, 2013, 10:02 PM

Hey, DU winos -- what have I got here?

So my mother in law gave us a box of bottles of a French red she'd retrieved from the back of a closet, one of which we all opened and drank. She knew nothing about it except a friend had brought it back from a trip.

It was a mighty wet old cork, but the wine was excellent. And the label looked like this, after I peeled it off:



...So should we be drinking this ("Plan A"), or setting it aside for longer?

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Reply Hey, DU winos -- what have I got here? (Original post)
Robb Feb 2013 OP
NRaleighLiberal Feb 2013 #1
Robb Feb 2013 #2
bif Feb 2013 #3
libodem Feb 2013 #4
msanthrope Feb 2013 #5
A HERETIC I AM Feb 2013 #6
Robb Feb 2013 #7
A HERETIC I AM Feb 2013 #8
Glassunion Feb 2013 #9
cbayer Feb 2013 #10

Response to Robb (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 10:08 PM

1. 1992 Volnay - drinking time! should be prime time!

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Response to NRaleighLiberal (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 10:23 PM

2. Yay!

Is Volnay a winemaker or a region?

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Response to Robb (Reply #2)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 10:45 PM

3. It's the region.

It was bottled by Jean Beauvillon.

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Response to Robb (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 11:01 PM

4. Yeeeessss

You rang? You said winos....I buy mine by the box. That stuff looks mighty fancy.

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Response to Robb (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 11:09 PM

5. You look to be drinking a damn fine Burgundy. You've got to make a

coq au vin.

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Response to Robb (Original post)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 09:03 AM

6. I agree with the others about drinking it now.

In fact, if the cork is as wet as you suggest, drinking it now is best unless you are prepared to re-cork it.

The totally wet cork suggests the bottle has been on its side for a very long time. When you hear of a very old bottle of red wine, it has almost always been re-corked at some point, the older it is, the more likely several times.

When a cork has soaked through, that's when they begin to deteriorate and allow air to enter the bottle. Air and light are the mortal enemies of alcoholic beverages, particularly fine wines.

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Response to A HERETIC I AM (Reply #6)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 11:05 AM

7. Now, I *do* have a corker.

I make cider and mead at home, and cork bottles fairly regularly. Should I sanitize some corks and re-cork these guys? Will this stuff continue to get better, or should I create a few special occasions, pronto?

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Response to Robb (Reply #7)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 12:36 PM

8. How bad do you want to drink it? (edited)

Years ago I sold wines by the case in private wine tastings and became familiar with many aspects of the vintners art, but I confess, my knowledge of Burgundy is very limited.

If you told us you had a '92 Chateau Haute' Brion, I would say, with no reservation, re-cork it and drink it in ten more years.

Not being too familiar with the one you have, I did a quick search for Burgundy Wines and the Wikipedia article mentions "as long as 15 years" for aging. I also found this interesting article on oxidation;

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Premature_oxidation

It specifically mentions 1990's Burgandy vintages as having been problematic.

Best bet? Drink that puppy!!

Edit: just read your OP and the rest of the thread again and oh wow! You have 6 of them. Dummy that I am, I should read more carefully. Well, that changes things a bit.

If they have been stored well, and if the first one tasted OK, then you have a choice or two. If they have all been together and therefore all of them have wet corks, stand the others up. Let the corks dry a bit (a couple weeks should do it) UNLESS the first one tasted fine or maybe just a bit tannic. If you think they could stand laying down for longer, then yes absolutely re-cork the other 5. The problem is, if the first one tasted good, they all very likely at their peak, and further extended aging will do nothing except possible harm. If you think you might drink them all over the next few months, just standing them to let the corks dry a bit should do the trick. If you think you want to hold them longer than say....6 months, I would seriously consider re-corking them.

If you have a good fine wine retailer in your area, ask their head buyer or most knowledgeable wine person. They may agree with me or tell you I have no idea what I'm talking about!! Either way, you'll have another opinion and one more authoritative.

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Response to Robb (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 01:33 PM

9. I agree with others that you should be drinking it now.

You have a decent Burgundy there. That wine in particular recommends cellaring for 8 to 20 years and you are right there. So drink up.

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Response to Robb (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 01:35 PM

10. Hey, Robb. Why don't you send me a bottle or two and I'll check it out for you!

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