Do you regularly host your own wine tasting parties? Or are you thinking about throwing a wine-tasting event from your home?
Either way, if you want your celebration of wine to go with a bang rather than a blow, you need to make sure that you have stored your collection of wines correctly.
Whether you have 10 bottles of fine wine or 100, the advice for storing wine is the same. You need to ensure that your collection is subjected to optimal conditions if you want your guests to be able to enjoy the full flavor of your chosen varieties.
Not sure where to start when it comes to storing your wine collection?
Keep reading to discover everything you need to know about wine storage, from what temperature to keep your wine at to where exactly you should store it.
Choose the correct temperature
Do you want to know the quickest way to ruin your prized wine? Allow it to become too hot or too cold. When wine is stored at the right temperature (between 50-58 degrees Fahrenheit), it can happily sit and wait until you and your guests are ready to drink it.
However, if it becomes too hot, your wine can become cooked, and its aging process will be quickened, and if it becomes too cold, the wine can freeze, causing pressure on the cork and even cracking of the bottle.
Although grapes need the sun in order to grow, once your wine has been made, it should be kept away from sunlight as well as any artificial light. This means no storing your wine in your kitchen where natural light is more than likely in abundance.
What happens to wine when exposed to UV rays? Not only will the labels on your wine bottles start to fade, ruining the aesthetics of your collection, but it will also speed up the aging process of the wine, affecting its overall taste.
Store in the right place
When it comes to where to store your wine, you have several options available to you. If you are lucky enough to have a wine cellar, then this is where you should store your wine until you are ready to drink it.
However, if you don’t have a wine cellar at your disposal, you need to find another temperature controlled space for your wine. Your best option is to find a wine storage facility that will keep your wine in consistent conditions until you are ready to drink it.
That being said, a cool, dark cupboard will suffice while you look for a more permanent storage solution.
Lay bottles on their side
If you do decide to keep your wine collection at home, you need to make sure that you are storing them in the correct way. All wine bottles should be stored on their side rather than vertically, as this helps to ensure that the cork does not dry out, which can lead to oxidation of the wine.
However, it is worth noting that if you have any screw cap bottles of wine, the above rule does not apply, so feel free to store these bottles any way you wish.
Monitor the humidity
Another crucial factor in the storage of wine, if the environment in which your wine is stored is not humid enough, again the cork can become too dry, and the wine can become oxidized.
If you are unable to control the humidity in your chosen storage space, you may want to invest in a humidifier or alternatively, pop a small bowl of water in the cupboard with your wines to naturally improve moisture levels.
That being said, too much moisture is also problematic, leading to mold growing on the label and ruining the aesthetics of your collection.
When should I drink my aging wine?
If you are trying to decide which bottles of wine to open for your next wine tasting event, then the below should help you.
There are several factors that determine when is the perfect time to open a bottle of wine, including the quality of the wine, the vintage, the storage method that you choose for it, and even the size of the bottle itself.
It is also dependent on your individual tastes as a wine drinker.
Do you want you and your guests to enjoy the fruity juiciness of a younger wine? Or are you going for a more complex and savory aroma that can only come as a result of aging?
As a general rule, a good vintage wine needs a minimum of 10 years of aging to really get to its best, whereas a younger wine should be enjoyed within a shorter time frame so that you can enjoy its vibrancy.
How should I store wine that I want to drink now?
If you have bought wine specifically to drink at a wine tasting event in the near future (maximum of 6 months), then you can safely store your wine at home without fear of it becoming ruined.
To keep your wine at its best, store it away from direct sunlight and extreme temperatures. If possible, keep your wine in a temperature-controlled wine cabinet as temperature fluctuations are not good for wine, even ones that are going to be drunk shortly.
You should also try to keep your wine away from vibrations, so avoid moving it around too much as this can encourage the speeding up of chemical reactions in the wine that will affect its taste and potentially spoil the wine.
Once opened, make sure that you keep your wine away from strong odors that have the ability to taint it.
Are you looking for somewhere to store your aging wine collection? StorageArea.com offers the largest database of storage facilities in the United States, helping you to find the best wine storage facility near you.
Remember, if you want to offer your guests a wine tasting event that they will never forget, you need to take proper care of your wine.