Tips for storing wine in colder climates.
If you were to ask most wine collectors what their biggest concern is regarding wine storage temperatures, most would say they’re concerned with their collection stored in too warm a climate and how it might impact the quality of their wines. However, while warmer temperatures do indeed impact the quality of wine, storing wines at too cool a temperature can also have a negative impact on wines as well. Below are some tips for insuring your wine collection is stored correctly if you live in a colder climate.
Almost any article you read on wine storage, whether it’s for red wine or white wine, will tell you to keep your wines “cool”. But what exactly does “cool” mean? Wine experts suggest that the ideal temperature range is between 45° F and 65° F, with 55° F often cited as close to perfect. For many more casual wine drinkers, especially white wine drinkers, bottles are often stored in their refrigerator, along with produce and other perishables. Is this a good idea?
The answer is, yes, for a while. Keeping your wine in the refrigerator for a few days won’t impact the quality of your white wine, since the average temperature of most refrigerators are below the 45° F range. There are, however, a few cautionary tips with keeping your wine in your food refrigerator for too long. First, while the temperature may be acceptable, the humidity of the refrigerator likely is not. Most food refrigerators lack the humidity needed to store wines, so keeping a bottle of wine in the refrigerator more than a few days may result in the cork drying out, which subsequently will let air into the bottle, impacting the quality of wine.
If you are storing your wine bottles in your refrigerator, be sure to lay them on their site to keep the cork moist and intact with the wine, and don’t store the wine in the refrigerator more than a few days. Another tip to consider if your refrigerator is your only option for cooling and storing your white wine is where in the refrigerator to store your wine. The back of the refrigerator is the coldest, often too cold for wine, so avoid pushing your bottle to the back of the refrigerator.
For those who keep their white wines at “room temperature” and live in extremely cold climates, be cognizant of what “room temperature is. In winter, do not store wine in an unheated area. Though that sounds counterintuitive, if parts of your house get well below 45 degrees for weeks on end, that can be too cold for your wines. This also applies to garage storage, where wines will definitely freeze or over-chill if left for too long.
Of course, many people who are collectors of wine choose to store their wines is climate controlled wine cellars, which will protect the integrity of both your red wines and white wines, even in the coldest of climates. There are several types of climate control systems for wine cellars so be sure to deal only with certified, licensed, bonded, knowledgeable technicians when having a climate system installed in your wine room.
While the above tips are guidelines any collector of wines should follow when storing wines in cold climates, there are those who want to know how different kinds of wines should be stored, even in colder temperatures. The answer to “What’s The Best Temperature to Store My Wines?” can be broken down by red, white and champagne, as well as style. However, for most collectors, following the standard advice for wine storage in colder weather will protect your collection all year round.