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Dear Dr. Vinny,

How old does a wine have to be for it to be considered a “library wine”?

—Dave S., San Francisco

Dear Dave,

The term “library wine” refers to a wine that is being kept or cellared away, or is part of a collection—basically, anything you’re not drinking at the moment. Sometimes wineries will sell an older vintage of their wine that they’ve kept cellared for a while, calling it a library wine. The term doesn’t refer to a specific age, but it does suggest a wine that has been or should be cellared before drinking. How long depends on the wine and on the person drinking it. There isn’t really a standard.

—Dr. Vinny

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