Once upon a time, wine drinkers needed only a subterranean space sheltered from direct sunlight to protect their precious bottles. While this is still certainly a viable option, technology is being used increasingly to not only preserve the quality of the wine, but to elevate it from cellar dweller status to home centrepiece. And with the endless array of aesthetic options to choose from, it’s now possible to keep your beloved bottles on display without compromising the integrity of the wine.
But perhaps the question still remains: is it worth the effort to keep your treasured beverages under such precise conditions? Here are just a few things to ponder:
The Right Light – Conventional wisdom has always leaned in the direction of keeping wine in near darkness since light affects its aging process and taste. But modern advances ranging from UV filters and switchable glass (changing from clear to opaque with the press of a button) allow your valued vintage to – literally – take the spotlight. LED bulbs are another increasingly popular wine-friendly lighting solution. They consume far less power than traditional bulbs, emit virtually no heat and can even be set (via app or touchscreen) to an infinite array of colour variations. Consider it “mood lighting” for your merlot!
Targeted Temperature – Along with controlling exposure to light, keeping your wine at the right temperature is the key to proper preservation. Warm areas in the home with large temperature fluctuations of more than 10–15°F are damaging to wine, and can be a year-round problem for desert dwelling vinophiles. Between 53–57°F is the ideal range for red, white and sparkling wines to age and evolve, if they’re meant to do so.
Do Not Disturb – When aging wine for longer periods, be sure to allow it to sit relatively still. Constant motion and/or moving the bottles from place to place agitates the wine, and can speed up the maturation process. And wine should be stored (especially for longer periods) on its side to keep the wine in constant contact with the cork to maintain the seal and protect the flavour.
Wonderwalls – One of the biggest trends in storage today is the wine wall. They are not only beautiful, but incredibly versatile. Because they generally measure about 20-25 inches deep, they can be easily integrated into the design of any entertainment area. In terms of capacity, they store fewer bottles than a traditional cellar, but certainly house more than the average wine cabinet. Best of all, they’re a brilliant way to showcase your finest chardonnays and cabernets for guests!
Still have quandaries? Just give us a call, text or email. Our wine storage experts will be happy to answer any and all questions to help you trust in technology when it comes to storing your valuable vintage!