While many Australians enjoy their wine, most of Australia’s wine drinkers don’t have a dedicated wine cellar in their home. But good wine benefits from proper storage, so here are our top tips for storing your wine at home if you don’t have a wine cellar or a dedicated wine fridge.
When storing wine there are three key things to consider – the temperature, the amount of light, and the vibration. Heat and light are the two most important things to control when storing wine of any colour or variety.
Keep it cool and dark
In short, heat is a not good for wine because it speeds up the ageing process, and while that might sound attractive if you want to drink some wines sooner, it also interferes with flavours and chemical compounds. Additionally, it speeds up oxidation in wine, and while small amounts of oxygen assist the ageing process, large amounts can destroy wine.
The ideal storage temperature for wine is around a constant 13 degrees Celsius but it can be stored successfully in a room that is on average less than about 21 degrees. You also want to avoid places that have a large fluctuation in temperature.
Light can also cause problems for long-term storage, particularly sunlight, which can degrade and prematurely age wine. That’s why many wines are bottled in coloured glass as it helps protect the contents. Most household lights will not cause the wine to age prematurely, but fluorescent bulbs should be avoided because they emit small amounts of ultraviolet light.
White wines are generally more sensitive to light degradation, but reds will also degrade if they are subjected to excessive light.
Keep it still
Before the introduction of screw-tops, the advice for wine storage was to lay the bottles down so that the cork didn’t dry out. If you have wine with corks, you need to follow this advice for long-term storage. However, it’s not necessary for screw-top bottles, although it is the most space-effective way to store wine, as well as being practical.
Vibration is also something to minimise for the long-term storage of wine. It isn’t as important for short-term storage, but it is something you want to avoid with any wines you’re planning to store for several years. This is because vibration will prevent sediment from settling in one spot and when you decant an old wine, you decant it to remove sediment. If the wine is shaken up and the sediment is throughout the wine, it is much harder to eliminate.
“When storing wine there are three key things to consider – the temperature, the amount of light, and the vibration.”
What’s the best place to store wine at home?
The best place within your home is in a subterranean environment like a basement or underground garage. Within these environments, you need to avoid storing it close to anything that generates heat like washing machines, dryers and fridges.
The most convenient option within the underground location is a purpose-built wine rack or cupboard so the wine is easy to access and stored in a space-effective way.
If you don’t have a basement, which most Australian homes do not, you can store wine in a cupboard, under the stairs, or even your kitchen pantry.
Once again you want to choose a location that has a consistent temperature all year round, is away from direct sunlight, and free from vibration. Many people buy a small wine rack and sit it on top of a fridge, but this is not a great location because it’s warm and it vibrates.
You could even use a draw anywhere within your home but given the weight of the wine you’re better off placing it in a bottom draw so it doesn’t make your cupboard top heavy.
Another option is to have a built-in wine rack in your kitchen or dining room which is out of direct sunlight and not susceptible to fluctuating temperatures. There are many, many options for wine racks which can be made of wood, metal and even plastic, so shop around for the best option for your space and decor. You can even have a custom-made wine rack made to suit your home.
“The best place within your home is in a subterranean environment like a basement or underground garage.”
Enjoy alcohol-removed wine from Edenvale
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You’ll find select Edenvale varietals at Dan Murphy’s, Coles, Woolworths, and IGA, or you can buy your Edenvale directly from our online store or from one of our online retail partners – Sansdrinks, CraftZero, Brunswick Aces and Free Spirit Drink Co.