ask dr. vinny

Hello there! I'm Dr. Vinifera, or "Vinny" for short. Ask me your toughest wine questions, from the technical aspects of winemaking to the fine points of etiquette. I hope you find my answers educational and even amusing. Looking for a particular answer? Check my archive and my FAQs.


Dear Dr. Vinny,

I have seen devices advertised in reputable wine-gadget catalogues that purport to age the wine with just a touch. For example, if you want to know what a wine will taste like in 3 years, touch the device to it for 3 seconds and, voila, it will "age" 3 years right in the glass. Does this really work? If so, how? And why ever again wait 7 years or more for your good Bordeaux to develop?

—Ken, Dallas

Dear Ken,

Let me preface this response by saying that I haven't tried this specific device. I'm open-minded: Miracles might happen.

That said, I'm skeptical. Maybe it's because I'm a wine purist, or perhaps it's because I only got a "C" in high-school chemistry, but these kinds of gadgets always make me raise my eyebrows. I love the mystery of wine—including the mystery of what happens when I age wines in my cellar. If I could magically get my wines to where they'd be in a few years, I'd have nothing to look forward to!

Until there is some sort of comprehensive test that can prove these gizmos work, I'd be hard-pressed to recommend them to a friend.

—Dr. Vinny

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