Something is relaxing and refreshing about sipping a glass of wine at the end of the day. Relishing the aroma, savoring the taste, and enjoying the texture of the wine, and figuring out if it was aged in a wooden barrel is both aphrodisiac and refreshing. Sadly, most people do not have the facilities to store wine at home, and the drink loses its sheen. Are you planning on storing wine at home? We hope these Dos and Don’ts will come in handy and help you design your home right for wine storage.
Do: Store It in the Dark
For your wine to stay fresh, you need to store it in a dark and cool place. This is because the bottles’ darkness and storage protect the wine from exposure to harmful UV rays, impacting the wine and leaving it vulnerable to heat damage. Exposure to heat and UV rays can destroy the wine’s taste, flavor, and aroma by oxidizing the sulfur-containing amino acids. This is why it is important for wine cellars to be in the dark and store the drink in dark bottles. It is also important to store the wine away from places that might vibrate, like a washer, dryer, home gym, stereo, etc.
It would help if you design a room that traps UV lights, has no vibration, and keep your wine safe. Besides this, as an added protection wrap your wine bottles in a cloth, place them in a box, and store them away from the vibration and light for longevity.
Don’t: Store It Upright.
Storing your wine bottles on the cupboard or leaving them upright in the fridge might seem convenient and save space. But wine connoisseurs say that this does not help your cause of preserving the wine. This is because the cork dries out when it is upright position and causes oxidation. This causes the wine to become musty and malodorous.
The cork might crumble when you dry to open it, running the wine flavor as the remains from the cork mix into the wine. Besides that, placing the wine bottle on its side will help you see if there is sediment formation in the bottle before you decant it. So, make sure you store wine horizontally even at home. This would avoid premature aging and seepage.
Do: Maintain Uniform Temperature
The rule of the thumb for wine storage is that it should be preserved at a temperature of around 11-14˚c. Heat is the enemy of wine storage. Exposing wine to temperatures over 24˚c harms the drink as it starts to oxidize. Storing wine in temperatures over 21˚c will make it age faster and consistent exposure will turn the drink flat and cooked.
This means it would lose the dryness, bitterness, and astringency of the wine will be lost, and you might have a tasteless drink that nobody enjoys. Ensure your wine storage unit is not in the kitchen as the heat runs high, and it could ruin your wine. Besides, the humidity might also run the corks dry and ruin the taste. The ideal way to store wine would be in a temperature-controlled basement. However, if you do not have the luxury of dedicating your basement to wine storage, you can invest in a wine cooler or wine fridge based on your collection. As the temperature is constant, the wine would remain fresh for longer and age naturally.
Don’t: Store It Beyond Expiration Date.
Some of the most expensive wines in the world are a few centuries old. The Speyer Wine Bottle, for instance, dated back to 325-350 AD and was discovered in 1857. This is believed to be the oldest wine in existence and is preserved in a museum. While experts believe that on a microbial level, and might not kill the person, but the taste might be bad. The 1700-year-old wine was designed to age and get better with time, so it is not poisonous even after all these centuries.
But not all wine is meant to age. Some of them might not last even a few years. So, based on the wine you have in your collection, you might have to finish them off before they hit the expiration date. These wines might not taste better with age. So, look for the expiration date on your wine bottles and finish them rather than storing them in the wine cellar and hoping for them to taste like fine wine. Remember, most red wines in the right storage facility can last up to three years, whereas white wine can last only a year or two, even in the finest facilities.