Drink date advice

The Society's buyers provide recommended drink dates for all of our wines to help members decide the right time to pop the cork. As a general rule, most everyday white wines are best enjoyed within a year of purchase, and most everyday reds within two years. Certain fine wines, however, those with the right structure and balance, have the ability to evolve over time and gain complexity and finer nuances of flavour.

If the product page says:

...then our advice would be:

Drinking now

Should be drunk over the coming months, certainly within the year.

Now to...

Ready to drink now but will keep until the year shown.

Date range
(e.g. 2020-2042)

We recommend keeping longer before opening. For example, a wine will be ready to drink in 2020 but still young and will keep until 2042. It's a matter of personal taste when such wines should be drunk. Many members prefer to try the wines over many years from the opening drink date to the last to watch the wine evolve.

Within one year of purchase

A non-vintage wine that should be drunk within 12 months.

Within two years of purchase

A non-vintage wine that is ready now but will keep for two years.


Ageing fine wines

Savouring the wonderfully complex and intense bouquet and flavour of a wine drank at its peak is undoubtedly one of life's greatest pleasures. As with people, the ageing process will vary from wine to wine. Over the years the wine's primary aromas of fresh fruit will develop more complicated and persistent secondary and tertiary aromas. The fruity flavours of, for example, a premier cru white Burgundy will, over time, evolve buttery, toasty and yeast aromas, or fine reds may develop coffee, cedar, tobacco, vegetal, or even 'animal' flavours as they age.

When should wines with long drinking windows be opened?

There is much pleasure to be had by experimenting with bottles at different stages of maturity; finding out how a wine evolves with age and, perhaps more importantly, establishing your own preference in terms of taste for mature wine are all part of the interest and excitement of cellaring wine.

The drinking window we provide is a guide to when the wines will be at their best. Many will favour the wines in the youthful early stages of their development; others will enjoy the wines at their most mature.

Decanting is a useful way of softening the tannins, rounding out the flavours and releasing the potential of a young wine. To find out more please visit our Serving Wine guide.

Storing your wines with The Society

The Society's purpose-built, temperature-controlled Members' Reserves offers members access to optimum storage conditions for their wines.

Help and advice

For more help and advice about how best to enjoy your wines contact us via our enquiry form.

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