I wonder if I’m the only one suffering from this. I like drinking wine but I do also enjoy buying (I prefer the term collecting but buying is more honest) wine. Wave an offer under my nose and I tend to buy. For many years I had no strategy other than being keen on certain types. So I amassed a fairly substantial amount of wine. I didn’t really even worry about red/white balance and I find now that as the reds tend to both take longer to mature and whites tend to be prone to going beyond their drinking windows that my ‘cellar’ has reddened. Another factor is that our eating habits have tended to be lighter/ more white wine friendly. I’m trying as a result to not buy red. Do others have the same or similar issues?
Slightly similar in that Mr. Leah does not drink white. I think he just hasn’t given it a fair chance. He’s not than keen on Champagne either unless its rosé and he will drink still Rosé too. As a result of these factors, we definitely have more red than white as like you say it takes longer to mature.
'm trying address this balance with the recent EP offers, going for whites only in Burgundy but with a mix in Rhone. I do think however we will always be red heavy.
I suspect most of us have this issue, for the exact reasons @Oldandintheway lists. My Cellar is 70% red (no doubt red Burgundy infatuation is a factor), 29% white and 1% rose. The whites are predominantly German Riesling, Chardonnay and to a lesser extent Chenin Blanc… all with aging potential.
At home I always seem to run out of whites faster, to be fair most of my reds that I keep at home have at least 5 years left in them. I started to try and balance this buying half bottles of whites for delivery ready for drinking (Society’s White Burgundy, Cauhape Chant de Vignes etc.). So now if I think white I seem to have a half bottle to hand.
I have this problem and am so far unrepentant! Only white I have in storage is remainder of a case of Barsac halves. I more or less only drink a bottle per week, so it tends to default to red - I should address this though as I’m missing out on ‘half the world’…
And my reds in storage are entirely Bordeaux & Rhone…
Everything we buy for laying down is red - mostly from the a TWS vintage cellar plan and white burgundy is too expensive for my wallet. Are there cheaper whites worth laying down? Perhaps a vintage cellar plan focussed on those exceptions would balance our cellars - white riojas, NW chardonnay…?
I enjoy both red and white wine, but my collection is very heavily red-centric. The main reason is that reds are more likely to be age-worthy and so my long-term stored wines are almost entirely red. Like @leah I’m trying to balance this, and have got some white Burgundy coming that will be stored, and hopefully some white Rhone too.
By contrast, my regular TWS orders are almost always approximately 50-50 in terms of reds and whites. Mrs H basically doesn’t drink red wine at the moment and is much less bothered about what’s going in her glass than I am - as a result the whites we buy tend to be less expensive crowd-pleasers and aren’t designed for the long haul. Also we’re both drinking those, rather than just me drinking the red, so we tend to get through them quicker.
Cellar tracker tells me I am 75/25 red/white. Which overstates it a little, as I have some wine for short term not on cellar tracker, mainly white. It won’t take it below 70% red though.
Round about what I expect given the maturity dates of red v white.
Cheaper whites worth laying down…? German and Alsace Riesling aren’t that cheap but cheaper than White Burgundy on the whole. NZ Chardonnay such as Kumeu River, maybe some SA Chenin, some Loire whites.
All out now, but usually comes back in the summer.
Also, not with TWS, but worth putting some away…
Would also add Hunter Valley Semillon
Or just buy an already aged one
I’ve been looking closely at my cellar lately. Not a bottle count but a guess, I’m under 10 % white. A couple of Champagne, mainly received at Christmas. However, this reflects our drinking habits. Things will change in the summer a bit, but whites tend to be brought to drink, so pass through the wine rack quite quickly.
It’s not that I don’t age whites, I’ve bottles of Vourvey and Hermitage well over 10 years old, but who do you serve them too.? White wine drinker don’t like these aged whites, there a bit like white red wines, in that they’re rich and complex, with substantial mouth feel and often off dry. Which is what I’d say about people thinking of aging white. Be sure you will like the style of wine. If not drink young styles.
Currently trying to convince myself that Cinsault is a white wine… in that case I am keeping to my resolution to only buy white🙂
I have suspected the same of myself for some time but hadn’t bothered to actually work out the exact percentages of what I have accumulated over the years. I guess Cellar Tracker would make light work of this but your post pushed me into compiling a manual inventory this morning. The result…
Red = 74% White = 25% Sparkling and Rose = 1%
A bit skewed as I probably drink 60% white wines. Like you, they favour the food I eat at home. As much as I love red meat I only eat it maybe once a week. Er, ragu and cottage / shepherd pies aside.
However, for the reasons others have mentioned I think it’s inevitable that any collection will be biased towards reds.
I was actually quite pleased with the balance of my inventory. No one area came up higher than 10% ( Red Burg, Northern Rhone reds, Piedmont reds, German whites all came in around that percentage ). Really glad I did this, it was a very interesting exercise. Many thanks for providing the motivation !
As you keep reminding me Leah!
Good shout re that L&W white though. I have some cash with them at present looking for a home…thanks.
Another sucker for an offer here…just cleared local M&S out of lots at the weekend !
I hadn’t taken red/white balance into account when I first got my cellar (various posts in other threads) but eventually it figured in my buying habits. Certainly more red due to ageing but still a lot of white - Riesling, Chardonnay, Chenin…
current cellar ratio (from he spread sheet ):
Cellar tracker reports 73% red and 27% white here.
Not the full story though. I do not record my “everyday” wines which tend to be white.
I do want to increase my stock of age worthy whites which at present are represented largely by German riesling and Sauternes. Honourable other inclusions are modest holdings of Au Bon Climat, Dog Point, Kumeu River and Newton Johnson chards.
Maybe should look at some better Chenins and semillions which I believe can age well and would provide me with wider choice?
This is uncannily similar to me including your comments about ‘everyday’ wines!
85% red, and the rest is mostly sparkling… so totally out of kilter, but am making a concerted effort to add a few more still whites this year (fingers crossed on the burgundy EP allocations!) I think I need to rein in the spending a little bit though…such a sucker for a TWS mailshot!