For those of you that believe that it is not the size of the ship but the motion of the ocean, when it comes to wine: you’re dead wrong!! As far as I’m concerned the bigger the bottle the better. Sommeliers and wine professionals cherish wines in large format. These bottlings are a bit harder to find and aside from being a lot more fun to pour, here are a few great reasons to seek them out.
Large format bottles (anything bigger than a standard 750ml bottle) age at a much slower rate than smaller bottles. As a natural part of the ageing process, corks allow some oxygen to pass through to the wine in the bottle. The slower ageing process for large format bottles is because the volume of liquid is greater but the amount of air passing through the cork remains the same. This difference slows their ageing and usually helps them shine among their smaller peers. You can find current vintages of white wine from liter bottles of Grüner Veltliner to magnums of Muscadet that make a perfect get together selection. For reds you should seek wines that have already had time to age, you will pay for it, but it will be worth it when you pop the cork!
Aside from ageing slower and thus being better for cellaring, wineries make far fewer of these bottles every year, so they also go up in value faster because of their relative rarity.
Big bottle = celebration. Enough said.
Although they can be expensive, remember they are also bigger. You can also sometimes find these bottles online (Lot18 offers them from time to time). The graphic shows a list of bottle sizes from boring on the left to king of the party on the right. Showing up with a big bottle always makes a splash.