Updated: Feb 17, 2021
So, it's your honeymoon, you've just splashed out and bought a really nice red to open in 5 years. You lay it down, stay away from the temptation of opening it early, then on the big 5 you open it... and it's, well, undrinkable?! - true story, our Marketing Manager wasn't so wine savvy 20 years ago!
Lucky for you, we're here to help! We asked our experts, they answered. Here it is folks! Tried and tested, this is wine storage for 'dummies'.
Not too Hot, or Cool - Just Right
Storing wine at the correct temperature plays a huge part on the longevity and drink-ability of your prized drop. An easy way to remember is the double C's - Cool & Constant. All wine - no matter what varietal; wants to be between 10°C-15°C with no fluctuations in temperature. One of the worst places to store wine is your kitchen because of this. Living in a city that has crazy temperature fluctuations (like Auckland) proves this to be difficult. If you're serious about your cellar, consider a wine cabinet that'll do the work for you and keep your wine comfy - Noel Leeming has some affordable options available.
Storing the Goods
If you're going to drink your wine within a week or two of purchasing, it'll be just fine waiting for you in the kitchen. However, if you want to age your wine there are a few things to keep in mind when finding the perfect place for it to sit tight. Until it's ready to be swirled and sipped, wine doesn't want to be in the spotlight. Keep it away from sunshine or artificial light as this can heat the wine and cause it to become stale before its time. Wine wants to be swirled, not shaken! Keep it away from major vibrations as this can damage wine by speeding up chemical reactions. Wine that is corked needs to be stored on its side to ensure the cork remains in contact with the wine and doesn't dry out. As mentioned before, storage temperature is important! Basements/garages that can double up as a wine cellar are ideal as they are dark, cool and generally not too busy. You can however, get pretty creative. Perhaps you have a little closet somewhere that you can put some DIY wine racks into, or a vacant storage area? As long as your space follows the basic guidelines above, you're good to go!
Coming of Age
Selecting wine to cellar can be daunting, how can you tell if your wine will age well? We asked Pete, our Winemaker - "This is totally dependent on the varietal/style. For example, Chardonnays and Rieslings will generally age very well, however Pinot Gris and Viognier not so much. Generally, wines with more tannin and acidity will age better, but there are always exceptions. As a wine ages in bottle, tertiary characters develop (generally more savoury) while primary fruit characters will begin to fade. So, if your wine is all about fruit expression, then it will generally be better enjoyed in it’s youth."
Sound easy enough? You can always look up your wine and check reviews, most wine reviewers will add a &