Financial Insights -
What Makes a Wine Collectable?
What Makes a Wine Collectable?
Whatever your reasons for buying fine wine, be it for pleasure or investment, eventually you will have amassed a ‘wine collection’.  

Different people collect all manner of different things for a wild and varied array of reasons. And wine is no different. 

Not only do individuals collect wines for their own personal reasons, but both historical and cultural influences are often at play. 

For example, the United Kingdom has a long affinity with Bordeaux, Champagne and Port. In the United States of America both Italian wines and those grown domestically have long been popular. Meanwhile, in mainland China and other parts of Asia, wines with names or labels associated with the Chinese zodiac or vintages with propitious numbers such as ‘8’, often see spikes in demand. 

Building your own cellar, there is no need for you to abide by any of these templates. Truly excellent fine wines are now made around the world and the demand for fine wines means there is an active, global secondary market. 

But a varied cellar, which appeals to a wide array of buyers, will help ensure the value of your collection remains robust. 

But, putting the style or origin of a wine aside, there are some universal factors that help make a wine ‘collectable’. Let’s take a look at those. 

Track Record of Excellence

Pedigree is all important. An estate that has patiently and diligently honed its style and craft over many decades, even many centuries, will naturally have many admirers. 

A longstanding brand is frequently a sign of quality. There’s a reason that the great châteaux and domains of Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne are considered benchmark producers, not just by collectors but even other winemakers. 

Venerable estates that continue to receive strong scores from critics are demonstrating that this admiration is still deserved. Conversely, younger producers who start to attract favourable reviews are perhaps showing they are a brand to follow. 

Whether it’s over a century or a decade, consistency is important. 

Ageing Potential

Somewhat tied to the entry above, demonstrating a track record of excellence is far easier if the wines are capable of ageing. 

Not only does this give collectors the chance to build ‘verticals’ from a particular label, but over the years wines from a particularly excellent vintage or brilliant producer now retired, become rarer and, thus, more valuable. 

Being the custodian of some of the last bottles of a particular wine left in the world is a distinct privilege that only great fine wines allow. 

Limited Production

Wines can become rarer over time as they are drunk, but some wines are rare right off the bat. Difficult vintages can reduce yields, a winemaker might only make a particular label from certain grapes, or a particular plot or in an exceptional year. 

Some wines are simply rare from the start and getting hold of them is difficult. This has been an increasing problem for many Burgundies in recent years. Here, small vintages from already small producers parcelled out to an ever-growing audience worldwide has made the wines significantly more expensive. 

But there are also many excellent wines made in small quantities around the world that are not hugely expensive. Nonetheless, they offer collectors an opportunity to embroider their cellar with exceptional jewels. 


Of course, a collection of the most prestigious and expensive names in the world of wine means nothing (and is worth nothing) if they turn out to be counterfeit. 

Buying from trusted sources and ensuring the shortest possible chain between you and the grower, will guarantee that your collection is filled with the genuine article. 

Being able to accurately track wines back to their source adds immensely to their value, their desirability and your own peace of mind. 

A great way to start collecting fine wine is to follow a cellar plan offered by a merchant.  

We offer several such plans with different monthly rates that allow you to build a cellar at your own pace and with a high degree of variety.  

Packages start at £250 per month and can include wines for short to long-term ageing and different occasions. The wines are sourced from classic regions such as Burgundy, Champagne, Piedmont and Rioja, as well as the USA, Germany, Portugal and even Greece. 

All cellar plans give members access to the Trading Platform (launching in 2025) and all wines are professionally stored with London City Bond. 

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