Your Passion and Your Portfolio: Tips on Wine Investing

While illiquid assets like fine wines (no pun intended) and other collectibles probably should not form the bulk of your holdings, there is certainly a place for them in a well-diversified investment program. And especially if you’re already passionate about such holdings, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t include them as part of your portfolio. However, it’s important to remember that such investing is not the same as owning assets for which large, widely accessible markets exist.

On the other hand, if you already have a deep interest in collecting fine wines you’ve probably taken the time to educate yourself pretty thoroughly in the finer points. Particularly for those wines you care the most about, you likely already have a pretty good idea of what constitutes an investment-grade wine (i.e., one that is likely to appreciate in value over time).

All that said, there are a few tips that can help you more profitably incorporate your passion for wine with your other investments.

  1. Carefully source your information. Though not as widely available for collectibles like fine wine, accurate information is still key. Websites like can help you stay abreast of current trends, market prices, and expert opinions. You can also follow the London International Vintner’s Exchange Fine Wine 100 index to keep tabs on purchase and sale prices for top wines.
  2. Condition is vital. Buying a case of a highly collectible wine accomplishes nothing if you can’t verify its condition, how it has been stored, and your own ability to keep the wine in perfect shape while in your possession. An expensive vintage that hasn’t been well handled is like an original Honus Wagner baseball card that’s been used for a bookmark.
  3. Infrastructure cost. And speaking of keeping your wine in top condition, it’s vital to consider the costs involved in acquiring and maintaining a high quality storage system for your collection. Given that a residential wine cellar of the capacity a true investor/collector would need starts at around $15,000 and can easily run to $200,000, this isn’t a pursuit for those lacking expendable resources.
  4. Patience. Like fine wine itself, your investment takes time to mature. Most experts say you should expect to hold your purchase for 7 to 15 years in order to realize maximum resale value, and some wines can age for 25 years.
  5. Deal only with reputable brokers. Because of the relatively small pool of qualified dealers for fine wines, you should work only with those who have demonstrated expertise and a good reputation in the industry.

At Empyrion Wealth Management, we specialize in helping clients build portfolios that reflect their passions. If you’d like a second opinion on your wealth management plan, click here to learn more.

Stay Diversified, Stay YOUR Course!

Empyrion Wealth Management (“Empyrion”) is an investment advisor registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940. Information pertaining to Empyrion’s advisory operations, services and fees is set forth in Empyrion’s current Form ADV Part 2A brochure, copies of which are available upon request at no cost or at The views expressed by the author are the author’s alone and do not necessarily represent the views of Empyrion. The information contained in any third-party resource cited herein is not owned or controlled by Empyrion, and Empyrion does not guarantee the accuracy or reliability of any information that may be found in such resources. Links to any third-party resource are provided as a courtesy for reference only and are not intended to be, and do not act as, an endorsement by Empyrion of the third party or any of its content. The standard information provided in this blog is for general purposes only and should not be construed as, or used as a substitute for, financial, investment or other professional advice. If you have questions regarding your financial situation, you should consult your financial planner or investment advisor.

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