What to consider when storing wine.
The first thing to consider when storing wine is when do you plan on drinking it?
If it is in the nearish future you don’t have too much to worry about. You should avoid too hot or too cold of temperatures as well as quick temperature changes. For example having your wine in the kitchen or around the stove/oven might heat the wine up and give it a cooked flavor.
If you are wanting to age your wine for a couple of years or decades (the will power that takes!) you need to consider a few more factors.
TEMPERATURE. Wines for long term aging should be stored anywhere from 45-65 degrees Fahrenheit with 55 being considered almost perfect. Warmer temperatures can can “cook” a wine giving it undesirable flavors or causing it to age more quickly. Cooler temperatures could freeze the wine, or more common dry out wine corks allowing air into the bottle causing oxidation.
HUMIDITY. Traditionally wine should be stored around 60-70% humidity as dry air has the potential to dry out the corks and allow oxygen in, but this isn’t super common. Anywhere between 50-80% will be fine for long term aging bottles. On the other hand too much humidity or damp conditions can promote mold to grow which can impact the wine if its not sealed properly.
ORIENTATION. Wines have been stored on their sides for centuries due to the theory that wine touching the cork will help them from drying out. However, if your wine as an alternate closure like a screw cap this is unnecessary. Pro tip: horizontal storage is more space efficient!
KEEP THE LIGHTS OFF. Light and sunlight can potentially harm a wine for long term storage. UV rays can degrade the wine quality and/or cause it to age prematurely-this is why a lot of wine bottles are tinted and not clear, especially red wine.
CONSISTENCY. Ultimately when aging wine for long periods, especially over a decade, the most important thing is consistency. If your wine is stored at a certain temperature or humidity try to maintain that rather than reaching an “ideal” temperature and constantly modifying it.
If you have any further questions please feel free to comment or contact me! Cheers!