Collecting wine is a pricey, albeit rewarding pastime. Are you protecting your investment with proper wine storage techniques? Unfortunately, many people make innocent mistakes that ultimate result in good bottles going down the drain. It pays to learn about optimal storage conditions…
Are You Committing these Common Wine Storage Blunders?
Storing wine upright.
A common occurrence with wine purchased by the case, upright storage dries out corks, exposing the wine inside bottles to air and making it taste like vinegar.
Minimizing or overlooking temperature storage needs.
While gradual, seasonal changes won’t harm wine, big, rapid fluctuations will age wine prematurely. Constant temperatures are key to lasting quality, with optimal storage temperatures between 45 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit. Avoid storing wine bottles in the fridge, which is far too cool for storage needs. On the flip side, also avoid storing your wine overly warm locations such as in your kitchen (particularly by the oven, dishwasher, or fridge, which emit heat), dining room, living room, boiler room or laundry room. Just because you run your air conditioner all summer long, doesn’t mean your collection will be safe. When wine is stored at temperatures of 77 to 80 degrees and above, flavors are altered, resulting in a sweet, vinegary brew. Red wine is particularly susceptible. Read more about cooling units necessary to prevent this issue here – /heating-and-cooling-units/wine-cellar-cooling-units/.
Failing to control humidity.
Below 50% humidity, corks can shrink, exposing your wine to air. Investing in a humidifier can prevent this, keeping corks cared for by ensuring humidity levels in the 70-80% range.
Inadvertently exposing wine to UV light.
Wine bottles are tinted for a reason. Just like your skin when it gets too much sun, UV exposure degrades wine’s organic compounds, resulting in premature aging that can negatively alter taste and aroma. Avoiding prolonged exposure to light, particularly sunlight, is essential to protecting your prized collection. Your wine does not need a room with a view.
Shaking things up.
Frequently moving wine – and constant vibrations such as you would encounter with traffic or machinery – can disturb the sediment in wine bottles, speeding up aging. Avoid constantly manhandling your bottles, storing them in a calm, safe location and away from areas of your home where you use foundation-rattling power tools (such as the garage or workshop areas).
Recorking skinny side down.
This may be easier, but the skinny side, exposed to the outside environment for so long, could have come into contact with anything. Go wet or wine-stained side down to avoid accidental contamination.
Store Your Wine Safely
Collecting and storing fine wines in a manner that helps them age gracefully is an exact science. Only custom wine cellars can create the precise conditions necessary to protect your pocketbook – and your pallet – from those unfortunate, vinegary sips. Luckily, custom wine cooling and refrigeration units are well within your reach. Discover how easily you can incorporate a wine cellar cooling unit into your home. Contact the knowledgeable temperature control professionals at H & H Heating & Air Conditioning today.