Should you Cellar White Wine?

Due to the structure of white wine, many will not age well past a few years, in fact they may start to spoil. While most white wines won’t last for decades, there are a few that will improve with age. When cellaring white wine yourself, you’ll need to know which varietals are have the makeup to last, and which you’re better off enjoying now.

Just as with red wine, specific white wines are worth the effort of cellaring to allow them to mature and improve in taste as they age. For instance, Pinot Gris typically tastes better in its youth than it does as it gets older. Other wines should be enjoyed while young include almost all Prosecco and Cava, most Moscato, and most Viognier. In addition, some white wines aren’t specifically designed for aging, such as mass-produced Sauvignon Blanc or Chenin Blanc, these will spoil in a cellar if kept longer than about two years.

Nearly all white wine can be drunk young without ruining the experience, only a handful will truly reveal themselves in their old age. This includes Vintage Champagne, the high acid levels will mature over time and settle the tastes. Riesling makes a strong case for offering the most dynamic and interesting evolution with time. Thanks to its bright acidity, a quality dry version can rest easy for 10-20 years or more, while a semi-dry or sweet Riesling can easily push 20-30+ years, this also applies to a quality Semillon of White Burgundy. The Varitial and composition of your white wine will determine the duration of cellar time to bring out its best.