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Sub £20 Bottles Worth Storing

Difficult to put a number on it! I think this is based on lots of personal factors such as weekly consumption, affordability, age, storage space and no doubt others.

My loosely-defined aim is to have a conveyor belt of ‘nicer’ wines in the £15-25 bracket (maybe more for birthdays and Christmas) which I can enjoy once or twice a month. I’ll supplement these with everyday drinkers bought at the time from TWS or the supermarket. I definitely prefer the more savoury, complex aspects of mature wine but wouldn’t want to (or couldn’t afford to) only drink older wines.

I probably have about 80-90 in that nicer category in various nooks and crannies at home plus in reserves, so plenty to keep me going - although most still need at least 3-4 years before I’ll open them so I haven’t really started enjoying the benefits of that conveyor belt yet.


I’ve got a bottle of this to drink sometime soon too. It is hopefully drinking now, but even at this level a Nebbiolo can age for a good five years.

Thanks that makes it flexible. I’m not so good at letting wines stay too long in my wine rack…

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So many great responses here - thanks everyone for your input.

Is there a book which details good vintages for wine ‘on a page’ as it were. It seems that a lot of members here know - from experience of buying through it - that certain years were good for certain wines. It would be useful to be able to flick through and see ‘Pinot Noit’ with a table underneath for good/less good/bad years.

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This is one of the most comprehensive ones, although not a book. Also you need to sign up to then view free.

TWS also have vintage charts (less detailed).


I find this from JR useful for a quick guide on vintages. Wine vintages | JancisRobinson.com


Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Wine Book is a great quick reference for things like that. By its nature it can’t drill down into detail, but for a reliable bird’s-eye view of pretty much everything, it’s very handy.

For vintages you get number charts but also, under the country chapters, a quick sentence or two with a bit more information about the character and progression of recent vintages.


I agree. Lighter reds aside, I found even the society’s own reds benefit from at least a year of cellar time and my scoring of them improves the further they are into their drinking window. Of course by the time I finish those I have, that vintage has been replaced with a much younger one, so now I stock up more at the outset.

Like @Wansteadbirder I try to keep less expensive wines ‘cellaring’ at home and dearer ones in storage but the reality is I don’t have space to store 2\3 years worth of wines at home so they end up in reserves too, next to EPs that could be there for 10+ years.

I don’t know if it is better to cellar a cheaper red for a couple of years or just purchase a different red that costs £1.50 more? The downside of the former is the lack of spontaneity, where as inflation probably limits any actual quality improvement of the latter.

I like the sound of @UisceBeatha’s conveyor belt system, which seems a great combination of quality and flexibility, but it will take a while before I’m there.


I think we’ve been round the houses a few times on this one, save to say I’d advise taking the WE ones with a pinch of salt - they are published primarily for American audience, which, for want of a better word, favour ‘bigger’ wines.

Of course, if you prefer those style of wines, then game on! :grinning:

I like the sound of your conveyor belt much more than old Brucie Forsyth’s one on the Generation Game.


I could have written this myself.


IMO this is the answer to sub-£20 whites, especially from Germany, where beautiful, complex, long-lived wines can be had at that price.