2002 St. Emilion Grand Cru

The effect of time on wine is one of the culinary world’s great magic tricks. Timing and conditions are crucial, and with patience and cellar space in short supply, well-aged wines are increasingly rare. Older French wines in the US have often been stored poorly, or have changed hands so many times they include layers upon layers of markups.

Pure Old-Vine Grenache.

Grenache is France’s second most planted grape. Found mostly in the South, as the primary grape in most Chateauneuf-du-Pape and Côtes du Rhône, grenache vines can also live well past their 100th birthday. With age comes lower yields and higher quality.

11-Year-Old Pomerol.

Wine classification can be confusing — categorization and branding changes dramatically from one region to another. For example, the Old World tends to identify wines by place, while the New World tends to use grape varietal. It seems a minor shift, but it has enormous implications for the way people perceive wines.