Wine Storage 101

wine storage 101

Wine collecting has become a growing trend across the world. There are certain wines that can be served right away, while others need to be stored in order to “age” properly. If you live in a smaller home or just don’t have the room to create your own personal wine cellar, what do you do to store your growing wine collection? The most optimum place to store your wine collection would be in a wine cellar, but most people do not have that option. Many self storage facilities are building special wine storage cellars. Specially built storage lockers are separated into wine storage units that are climate and humidity controlled and electronically monitored for the correct temperature and humidity levels. Do not store wine in a regular storage unit. Also, keep in mind that climate controlled storage units are not appropriate for wine storage as wine needs to be stored in a much "tighter" temperature range where temperature will not fluctuate more than one or two degrees. Temperature variances in regular climate controlled self storage units will definitely vary more than one or two degrees.

If you are planning on creating a wine storage solution at home, there are a few things that you should keep in mind when storing your wine. Wine needs to be stored at a certain temperature. The optimum temperature for storing red wines is 55 degrees. White wines can be stored at a slightly lower temperature. If the temperature is too high, it can rapidly increase the aging process and damage the wine. Wines should also be stored at a higher humidity level of 55 to 85 percent. Higher humidity settings help prevent the cork from drying out. The cork blocks oxygen from entering the bottle. If the cork dries out, oxygen can get into the wine causing oxidation, which in turn ruins the wine. Wine bottles should be stored on their sides to keep the corks moist and the sediment inside the bottle at a good mixture.

Another important factor in wine storage is darkness. Too much natural light or even fluorescent light can affect the quality of the wine. That is why most wine cellars are below ground and away from direct sunlight.  Most wine bottles have light protected bottles, but the glass protection only goes so far in protecting from the sun’s damaging rays. Also, too much vibration or shaking of wine bottles can cause sediment in the wine to redistribute incorrectly affecting the taste of the wine.

Wine collectors are very particular about their wines! They want to make sure that their investment is protected. When wine is stored under the right conditions, it will be more favorable and enjoyable. Choosing the right wine storage solution is key to keeping your wine collection protected. It will allow your wine to age properly and be enjoyable to share in the future.