Spring is an exciting time for wine connoisseurs: most of the white wines from the current vintage are bottled and are ready for sampling in the vineyard tasting rooms.

All over the wine-producing regions at this time you will find connoisseurs raising a glass to their lips, sampling and savouring the new wines, and enjoying the astoundingly individual quality of each vintage, successfully captured in the bottle once again. However, experienced wine buffs also use this time to sample the bottles that were introduced to the cellar in the previous year, as it is fascinating to experience how the wines have developed over time. The older wines are often particularly good when compared to the newly bottled vintages. The younger wines entice with youthfully exuberant aromas, whilst the older wines have undergone a wonderful transformation and their youthfulness has given way to more refined notes. Now with greater depth and character, and with their edges harmoniously honed, these ‘yearlings’ almost seem to have ‘grown up’!

Seasoned connoisseurs will be able to find exactly the right wine for a particular occasion and atmosphere by adeptly exploiting this character change. Young wines are usually perfect for enjoying in the garden on a warm day, whilst a somewhat more mature bottle will be the better choice to accompany a cosy night in with a sophisticated home cooked meal. The fascinating diversity of regional wines is not only reflected in the large range of grape varieties, vineyard locations and development options, but also through the gradual transformation of the wine’s character as it ages in the bottle in the cellar. And, anyone who takes notice of this process, and who follows it carefully, will understand that a good wine is more than just a tasty drink: it’s a vibrant and living entity!

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