All about Red Wine Storage
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If you don’t know the first thing about proper red wine storage, you aren’t alone. If you are a wine enthusiast, you probably already know that wine storage is a key element in the preservation of any good wine, but you may not know exactly what to do.
The first thing to know is that the same basic principles apply to storing fine red wine as well as that “everyday” wine you can pick up at your local grocery store.
Learning just how to store red wine is as simple as pie! You don’t have to be a longtime wine expert to store your wine properly, and you certainly don’t need a special wine cellar in the basement of your home (if you live in a region where basements are uncommon, you don’t have to worry!)
You should learn a little on the different types of red wine, however. Knowing that little tidbit of information will just make the storage process a little easier for you in the long run.
Getting Started With Red Wine Storage
Before you can successfully store any red wine, there are a few things you will definitely need. Ideally, you will need a basement, but if you don’t have one, a cool, dark area will do just fine. This could be a temperature controlled part of your house, or even in your pantry right in the kitchen, as long as it isn’t near the oven or stove. You will also need one of the many home wine racks and a refrigerator. And most obvious of course, you will need your red wines!
Learning Red Wines
After you have compiled all your required materials to store your red wines, take a little time to familiarize yourself with them. Just get to know red wines in general. Remember, different varieties of red wines will require different preparation and storage before serving in order to get the most out of the bottle. Some of them are ideal at room temperature while others do better with a slight chill.
The most common types of red wines that should be served with a slight chill include Chianti, Pinot Noir, Beaujolais, and Valpolicella. These wines have less texture and are typically younger than other red wines like Cabernet and Sangiovese that are typically served close to room temperature.
A note about red wine storage temperature…
A good rule of thumb is to keep your red wines over-chilled rather than too warm. This will ensure that your wines age nicely and don’t go bad on you.
If you store and serve a red wine in too warm of a climate you are bound to get a red, soupy mess. Remember, you can always set the wine on the counter to bring it to room temperature after it has been stored in a chilled environment.
Storing Red Wines
The best place to store red wines is in a cool, dark place. This is ideally a wine cellar underground. Any cool, dark place will work just fine as long as you monitor the temperature on a regular basis. The temperature should be consistent, ranging between 55 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit. If you store the red wine in too warm of a climate, it will age too quickly and ruin the wine.
A closet in the home is an ideal location for red wine storage if you don’t have a cellar or underground basement. As long as the area has air circulation to prevent mold growth, you are golden. Some people even pay nominal fees to build special wine closets in their home. These are usually in the kitchen or near the dining room.
When you store the wine bottles, be sure to store them on their sides. If you plan to drink the wine right away, it’s alright to stand it upright. However, if you plan to store the wine for any period of time, the wine should ultimately touch the cork. This prevents the cork from drying out and keeps air out of the bottle. When you open any bottle of wine and the cork is moist, you know it has been stored properly.
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