Wine Storage 101...
Keep the cork moist:
Store the wine horizontally or upside down so the cork won't dry up and shrink, allowing for air to ruin your good wine.
Keep the temperature constantly cool:
What kills a wine is variation in temperature. That is why it is not a good idea to store premium wine in a kitchen or living room. Why? Well, think about the temperature fluctuations in a typical house: cold nights, hot days, leaving on vacation, sunlight, etc. One good place is in the back of a closet (cool and dark). Light hurts wine also. It doesn't look as good as a nice wine rack in the living room, but it saves your wine.
What about after you open it?
Well, if you have any left, which we rarely do, the best thing to do is put the bottle in the refrigerator standing up just in case of a leak. We have found that gassing the wine with a few squirts from a can of "Wine Preserver" puts a blanket of CO2 gas over the wine, protecting the wine from oxygen. You can get the gas at the winery or most nice wine stores. Those small hand-held vacuum pumps work too.
Yes, get a wine refrigerator!
Maybe some of you found a better deal, but since I do most of my everyday shopping at Home Depot, I found a great one there. They have two wine refrigerators: one that holds 20 bottles ($200) and the other 25 bottles ($250), and even a 100 bottle one. $250 might sound like a lot of money, but good wine is too important to not store properly.
A Quick Guide to Optimal Temperatures for Serving Wines
In very general, red wines are served at cooler room temperatures and white wines are best served chilled. When wines are served too warm they tend to taste unbalanced with an alcohol edge. When wines are served to cold the innate flavors and aromas are significantly suppressed. So, to serve your wines just right, take a look at the Wine Serving Temperature guidelines below.
Optimal Wine Serving Temperatures:
- White Wines: 45-50o F or 7-10o C
- Red Wines: 50-65o F or 10-18o C
- Rose Wines: 45-55o F or 7-13o C
- Sparkling Wines: 42-52o F or 6-11o C
- Fortified Wines: 55-68o F or 13-20o C