Wine Storage At Home – Some Advice from Underground Cellar: Most wine is meant to be enjoyed within a few years of its release. Red wines can generally be stored for up to three years, whereas whites should only be stored for one to two years. Fine wines are a different story and can last much longer while increasing in value and quality, but if you are in this league of collecting, then your investment needs some serious storage that will protect those assets. Here are some tips for those who want to store their collections successfully.
Temperature, Humidity, and Light
These are the three most important considerations when it comes to wine storage. Wine must be kept at a stable temperature with no fluctuations that can cause the cork to expand and contract. The ideal temperature for long- or short-term storage is 55 degrees Fahrenheit. The optimum humidity level is 70%. Wine needs to be protected from the UV rays of direct sunlight that can damage the flavors and aromas. This is why most wine is stored in colored glass – built-in sunglasses for your beverage.
Achieving These Optimums at Home
You may want to consider better storage facilities if you have more than 4-5 bottles on your wine rack. If you are fortunate enough to have a basement, you could turn this into your cellar. Some simple DIY can provide you with racks for storage. Corked wines need to be stored horizontally to keep the wine moist. This is unnecessary with screwtops, glass, or plastic corks, but horizontal storage is efficient for maximum use of space and easy access.
A cupboard, small room, or even a section of the garage can also be used for storage, but avoid the kitchen, laundry room, boiler room, and areas near a window or too much foot traffic. The worst place to keep it is on top of the refrigerator. The vibrations from the compressor disturb the sediment, adversely affecting the aging process. The top of the fridge is too warm for optimum storage, and the kitchen has too many odors, like food and trash, that could permeate the cork and taint the wine. In addition, it is too light up there, so avoid it at all costs, even though it may seem convenient.
Place a water container in the storage area to improve conditions to obtain the correct humidity level.
A wine refrigerator is a great investment and can optimize your storage potential. Standalone or under-counter units are available and designed to maintain consistent temperatures with humidity control (unlike a regular refrigerator), away from light and vibrations. Some options have dual temperature settings to keep reds and whites at their best, ready-to-drink temperatures.
Larger Collection Storage
Wine Storage At Home – Some Advice from Underground Cellar. Suppose you have a comprehensive collection that you intend to resell in the future. In that case, using a company that offers wine storage in ideal conditions, such as Underground Cellar, is better. This service will hold your wine purchased and deliver it to you upon request.
Poor storage can spoil even the greatest wines, so consider these options for your collection, big or small.