Properly Store Your Wine

Most wines, red and white, are meant to be consumed within 24 hours of their purchase. However, fine wines can be stored for consumption at a later date.  Historically wine storage was the sole responsibility of wine merchants.  However, since the mid-20th century more and more consumers have been taking on this task by storing their wines at home.

Wine is one of the few commodities that can improve with age.  As a result, storage of wine requires more than simply having shelf space in a pantry.  Paying close attention to light, humidity and temperature is a top priority.  If stored improperly wine can rapidly deteriorate reducing its overall value in price and taste.

Wines should be stored in a dark, humid cellar or cooler, around 55°F.  The goal is to aim for consistency with all three so that the wine is never exposed to extremes of any of those elements.  Cellars are great for long-term storage.  However, coolers give a collector the ability to accurately control the light, humidity and temperature.  With these three under tight control the only variable left is the duration of storage.

On average red wines can be stored for anywhere between 2-10 years.  White wines can be stored safely for about 2-3 years.  The overall time in storage depends on the delicate balance between the sugars, acids and tannins.  Regardless of the type of wine,  researchers have found the optimum angle for storing wine bottles is at a slight angle, allowing the air bubble to remain at the top with some wine coming in contact with the cork.  This allows for slower oxidation and maturation process, and keeps the cork from drying out.   

Once the means of storage is complete, the last step in storing your wine is creating a system. Knowing the order in which you need to consume your wines will insure that every bottle opened is opened at its peak.  Some folks use color coded sticker systems while others create lists to track when each bottle was bought and when it needs to be opened.

About americanwinegrape

American Wine Grape Distributors Inc. AKA A. Silvestro Wine Grape, has been in business for over 5 decades. We are wine enthusiasts just like you and want to share in that enjoyment. This is why we are developing a new and exciting platform for growers, restaurants, sommeliers and home winemakers. Our goal is to bring the wine community together and is the driving force behind our new blog.