Now that my oldest approaches his 20th birthday my thoughts on birth year wines have taken on a little more clarity. Back in 2005 and 2006 I bought enough wine from 2003 that I knew as 2024 approached I would have enough bottles in the cellar to take care of my oldest. For the most part I stuck to Cabernet based wines like Quilceda Creek and Leonetti from WA, Dunn and Montlena from CA and a plethora of Bordeaux from the likes of Lynch Bages, Leoville Barton and Pichon Baron. I bought a number of wines from the Rhone as well but because of the abnormally hot vintage those wines have mostly not fared so well.
I think at one point long ago I thought I would give my son a case of wine from his birth year on his 21st birthday. I can say with certainty that probably isn’t a great idea. First off, at this point he is not really interested in wine. Secondly, I doubt he will have the storage that is required by these wines. Lastly, I am not sure most 21 year olds could resist the temptation of pulling a cork on an expensive bottle after last call at the local bar.
My plan going forward will be to have wines from 2003 in my cellar to enjoy at special dinners with my oldest over the next decade. Birthday dinners, wedding receptions, etc. If at some point wine becomes an interest of his I will certainly be able to pull together a case to put in his wine refrigerator or cellar.
In retrospect had I known this was how it would play out there are a few things I would have done differently. I would have mixed some Sauternes or Vintage Port into my purchases as these wines age incredibly well. I likely would have been well served to focus on larger formats as well. We all know a magnum ages longer than a standard bottle in addition to simply going further at the family dinner table.
Anyone else have differing thoughts on the topic?