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Wine/champagne value

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Question
Do you have any knowledge of champagne or sparkling wine and its value? I have bottles of oldish random bottles and would like to know whether to hold on to them, drink or throw?
Marie Stuart brut tradition
Boucher pere & fils
A carpentier
Cheers

Answer
HI Kay


Without knowing the exact ages of the wines you have, I can tell you that they were not meant for long term aging. Only the very best Champagnes are really intended to be aged--and those are identified by having the distinction of a vintage date on the label.  Any non-vintage dated Champagne is really intended to be consumed within a few years of release, and won't really improve much with additional bottle age.  

As they age, these non-vintage Champagnes tend to lose some of the charm of their fruit, and may even lose some bubbles as well.  It won't hurt you to drink them, but they may not be as good (or taste the same) as you remember.  

For all of those reasons, Champagnes like this don't tend to increase in value with age. If anything, most connoisseurs would be likely to pay less, rather than more, for such bottles.

I am sorry that I can't give you more exciting news.  If they were mine, I would chill them down and drink them at the next special occasion---and I'd have a back-up bottle or two on hand just in case they are completely past their prime.

Hope that helps

Paul Wagner  

Wine

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Paul Wagner

Expertise

Wines of the world, wine a food matching, wine and food service questions. I currently teach Wine courses at Napa Valley College, am an international wine judge, written many articles for publication, and have been a guest speaker at way too many wine conferences to remember. 25 years in the business. With Liz Thach and Janeen Olsen, I authored the definitive book on wine marketing: Wine Marketing & Sales, Strategies for a Saturated Market by The Wine Appreciation Guild, which won the Gourmand International Award in 2008 for the best wine book for professionals! With Rick Kushman of Capital Public Radio, I host a radio show and podcast called Bottletalk at rickandpaulwine.com, where I answer questions about wine and food on the air.

Experience

30 years in the business.

Organizations
Society of Wine Educators, Academy of Wine Communications, American Wine Society

Publications
Vineyard and Winery Management Magazine, Fine Wine Journal, les Amis du Vin Journal, Society of Wine Educators Journal, and more.

Education/Credentials
I have taught at Napa Valley College for the last twenty years.

Awards and Honors
Spanish National Wine Fair: A lifetime dedicated to wine award. Espaderino della Castelania di Soave in Italy.

Past/Present Clients
Wineries include Caymus, Wente, Parducci, Shannon Ridge, Paul Dolan Wines, Vigilance, and others. Wine regions include the Union des Grand Crus de Borcdeaux, Union des Grands Crus de St. Emilion, Consorzio di Chianti CLassico, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, Consorzio di Franciacorta, Rioja Alavesa, and others.

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