Anniversary and Birth Year Wines

What wines would you consider having for 10, 20 30+ years? I am looking to buy some Bordeaux, Champagne, and possibly Napa cabs for long-term aging. I have been looking at first growths, but not sure if I should spend the money on those, and if so, should I do 750’s or Mags?

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10-20 years, 750s and/or mags. longer, mags.

as for which wines, depends what you like. if you like bdx, then the top 30+ estates will do very well over that time period (most will require 20 years!). no need to only focus on the firsts.

for champagne, mags only and focus on the very top wines and realize that 30 is pushing it except for a handful.

of course vintages will also play a major role.

good luck!

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For anniversaries, I would focus on 750s. I personally wouldn’t do a big party that warrants larger formats…

In terms of regions, it really depends what you like… Burgundy, Bordeaux, Northern Rhone, Piedmont, Germany/Austria, Champagne are all great candidates.

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Kind of depends on your vintage. But get the best wine you can afford. Only caveat is you might not be quite as excited if you end up stuck with a bunch of anniversary year wines after the divorce…

For anniversaries, it depends on many people you will be entertaining. I was fortunate enough to be married in 1989 and had dinners on our 10, 15, and 20th anniversaries for about 24 people each time, serving all wines from the 1989 vintage at each dinner. For that type of group, magnums make the occasion even more festive, and I served magnums of Champagne at teach dinner, and of red wine at two of the dinners, as I recall.

For birthdays (if for children), I would go mostly with fifths as you don’t know how the birthdays will be celebrated. I bought birth year wines for my nephews (1977 and 1981), which they loved having, and more recently for my grand-niece (2017) and grand-nephew (2019).

Good luck.


Magnums are a must. It also depends on the particular vintage and the associated weather/growing season.
Great producers producer good–>excellent wines even in off years so if your particular vintage is such, seek out top producers. I’ve been questioning just how long Calif cabs/blends can last. I’ve migrated more toward collecting anniversary year wines from Rhone, brunellos in Italy, some Bordeaux and rose champagne. Again, magnums are a must! You can add 5-15 years of bottle life by doing so. Also port—splits or 750’s. It ages beautifully. Same should be said of rieslings too though I’ve only had a handful of them older than 10 years but results have been quite enjoyable!

Magnums definitely. On an evening of celebration, they add a little extra pizzazz, and are likely down the road to be in better shape than fifths.