If you’re planning to start collecting a few bottles of wine, storage is one of the things you need to figure out. Wines that need long-term storage are for maturing. It is for those who seriously want to get professional-made storage. And most wines out there are made to be enjoyed right away. So, you can do well for this type of wine by remembering these tips.
1. Wine Cellar Cooling
Wine Cellar HQ says it’s important to consider your climate when choosing a cooling unit, as through-the-wall units only work if your outside temperature is less than 100°F. Humidity and temperature can cause the cork to dry out. Furthermore, finding the means to control these two elements when you’re storing wine bottles with corks is crucial. That’s because when the cork dries, it becomes brittle and might start to fall into the wine.
There are various ways to keep wines cool. You can invest in a cooling system for your wine cellar or create a vapor barrier between the insulation and the foundation wall of the storage room. Moreover, a dehumidifier in your wine storage room or cellar makes a third low-cost alternative. Dehumidifiers draw moisture from the air through absorption or cold coils and filters. They have a built-in humidistat that allows users to set up the required humidity level.
2. Avoid Exceeding Cooling Temperature
If you don’t have a cellar with a cooling unit best for wines, you can temporarily hold them inside the refrigerator. Be careful, though, because they don’t do well in long-term refrigeration.
The fridge’s temperature is lower than 45° F and can dry out corks, making it prone to cracking. Refrigerators are ideal for fresh produce and storing cooked food, but not for wines because a damaged cork can let in air that can influence its taste. In addition, avoid extremely cold places that could freeze the wine. Once the wine freezes, it could pop the cork out of the bottle.
3. Position Them Horizontally
Properly storing wine also means that you’re likely to invest in a wine rack. It’s especially true for wine bottles with cork to keep them moist.
Storing wine long-term means that corks could dry out. They lose elasticity gradually, and the older they get, the less expanding they become. As mentioned earlier, corks can turn brittle, which risks premature aging and leakage. Additionally, keeping bottles on their sides provides you with easier access and more space to store wines.
4. Keep Lights Low
Normally, you won’t mind bright lights in storage areas for your belongings. But that’s not the case with wines. Your wine storage should have dim lighting and must be away from natural lighting that emits ultraviolet (UV) rays. It could cause premature aging to your wine, other than air exposure. That’s also why most wine bottles are tinted dark. Keep your unopened wine bottles in the dark, away from fluorescent lights and sunlight.
5. Avoid Shaking The Bottles
Theoretically, some think that vibration could chemically alter the contents of wine bottles. It’s common to find wine collectors who take storage seriously and fret over the vibrations caused by electronics inside the storage room. But there is barely any evidence to support its influence on wines.
Although older wines in storage keep sediments inside, vibrations could keep them from settling down. Sometimes, it could make the wine gritty, which is also the last thing you want. If you don’t live in a location where many causes of vibrations could shake wine bottles, you can keep these bottles safe.
6. Properly Store Away Opened Bottles
If you have been drinking wine for health or leisure at home, you must know how to preserve wine once opened. Wine bottles that have been opened can last three to five days as long as the cork is tightly placed.
You can use wax paper around the cork to make it easier to slide it back in place on the bottle. It will also help prevent the cork bits from dropping inside the liquid. If the cork has been compromised or discarded, you can replace it with a rubber wine stopper to effectively seal the bottle. Otherwise, you can get a vacuum pump to create an airtight seal and suck the air out of the bottle.
Wine is best enjoyed on any occasion, but it needs proper storage to retain its freshness for as long as possible. For beginners at wine keeping, it’s worth knowing how to easily store away wine in the most convenient of ways. You don’t have to buy expensive gadgetry to keep your wine fresh. You only need to keep these tips in mind for wines you can consume as soon as they are on sale.