hf high fill: normal fill level when the wine is
bottled.
in into neck: ideal for wines of all ages.
ts top-shoulder: normal for wines of 15 years or older.
hs high-shoulder: natural loss, normally not a cause for concern. Acceptable for wines over 20 years old, but exceptional for wines over 50 years old.
ms mid-shoulder: normally a sign of an ageing cork, therefore lower estimated value. Calculable risk. Not unusual for 30 to 40 year old wines.
lms lower mid-shoulder: risk still acceptable. Lower estimated value.
ls low-shoulder: risky purchase. Only acceptable for extremely rare or sought-after wines. Lowest estimated value.
Bordeaux

 

 

 

Burgundy, Champagne and similar bottles
Because these bottles have gently sloping shoulders, it is not possible to define fill levels in the same way as for classic Bordeaux bottles. It is normal practice with Burgundy bottles to give the distance between the cork and the surface of the wine in centimetres. Especially with Burgundies it is also important to bear in mind that fill level is not as good an indicator as with Bordeaux wines, for example. A fifty-year-old Burgundy with a 7 cm space between the wine and the cork represents only a slight risk, for example. 5 to 7 cm are normal in a Burgundy of this age. Less than 5 cm is considered first-class.

Burgundy