Reserve vintages

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Bmd2k1

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curious what strategies Wineries utilize for reserve vintages...

- timeframes aged
- pricing increase over the initially released vintage
- # bottles typically reserved

etc etc

Cheers!
 

VinesnBines

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Some of the wineries I’ve visited call their free run “reserve”. It had nothing to do with age. I’m not sure if that is an industry standard.
 
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In theory, "reserve" means it's a higher quality wine. This may be the best grapes were processed separately, or the winery may grade their barrels and segregate the best ones.

Cynically speaking, other wineries may make other choices. I've had "reserve" wines that were fantastic, and some that were pathetic.

If I was operating a winery? I'd make a "reserve" version of my best grapes, white and red, segregating on grape quality and individual barrel quality -- working with what I have. Aging timeframe would vary by wine -- like most things in winemaking, the wine decides, not me.

Number of bottles? As many as I can! Keep in mind that real quality is limited so I'll never get as many as I'd like!

Price? I'm too honest to price well. It's probably best to price just high enough that the average person will stretch to buy a bottle, looking to make sales in the long haul. A reserve wine supply needs to last long enough for the next vintage to be available. "Reserve" works when there is supply.

This is good marketing, which is a critical part of business.
 

Bmd2k1

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maybe "reserve" wasn't the correct term -- I'm seeing wineries put some portion of a batch of vino(s) away "in the vault" for longer bottle aging and later sales... Once re-introduced for sale -- price is Higher than initial release.

Cheers!
 

VinesnBines

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Some wineries call those "library" wines. Vertical tastings are of the same wines with different vintages.
 

winemanden

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"reserve" means whatever the Winery wants it to mean. It isn't a regulated term.
It is in some parts of the world.

Countries Where Reserve Wines Have Rules​

The two main countries where ‘Reserve’ has specific requirements are Spain and Italy.

Spain: Reserva Wine​

In Spain, wines labeled with ‘Reserva’ must be aged for 3 years with a minimum of 6 months of that time in oak barrels. You’ll see this used mostly for Tempranillo wine from Rioja, Toro, Ribera del Deuro and Valdepeñas. In fact, Spain has a very complex aging system and Reserva isn’t even the most aged wine they make! You can find out more about the Rioja classification system in order to seek out better Rioja wines.

Italy: Riserva Wine​

In Italy, each Italian wine region has a different definition of a Riserva wine. Most wines will be aged a minimum of 2 years to be labeled this way. On the higher end of the spectrum, Amarone is aged for 4 years and Barolo must be aged over 5 years before leaving the cellar. You can find out more about Italian quality levels in The Valpolicella Wine Pyramid: from Classico to Amarone.
Austria also has a ‘Reserve’ requirement which is a minimum alcohol content of 13% ABV.
 

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