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There’s a big difference between buying and drinking a bottle of wine today, and buying to drink or even resell years from now. Wine collecting isn’t just a hobby for those with deep pockets–anyone can collect wine, provided you have a proper place to store it and know something about the aging process. If you’ve ever been curious about starting your own wine collection, here’s what you need to know to start your own wine collection.

Proper storage is crucial

If you store wine under the wrong environmental conditions, it will deteriorate in quality and lose its taste. Plus, if you’re collecting wine with an eye to resell once the value has gone up, you’ll be losing money on wine that becomes unsellable.

You have several choices for wine storage for your collection. You can store it on racks in a cellar, provided the temperature remains a constant 52 degrees F (11 degrees C) and the air has around 75% humidity. Or, you can purchase a compressor-based wine fridge to keep the wine at a consistent temperature. If you can afford the expense, there’s also professional wine storage, but it is expensive and will eat into any profits you might see from later sales.

Choosing your wine

Choosing a wine for collecting is different than choosing a wine for drinking. However, one thing should remain the same–your tastes and preferences should fully impact the choice of wines you buy. Taste each wine before you buy multiple bottles to make sure you’ll enjoy them years from now. Research how the wine is made–what region it’s from, how long it takes to fully mature–so you’ll know what to expect from the wine as it ages.

Understanding aging

Different types of wine mature at different ages, so it’s important to know how long you should keep each wine before you either open it or sell it. Some wines, like Chardonnays, have a cellaring age of about 10 years, but some ports can be cellared for 100 years. Depending on what you buy, you’ll need to keep track of the age of the wine and how long you can keep it before it becomes undrinkable.

Feel free to ask anyone at Vin Bon about choosing wines for your collection, and don’t forget to choose some to enjoy today as well.

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