A guide to properly storing your vintage wine


The dark secret about wine is that it expires after a specific period. Some types are meant to last only for months and some for a few years. But there are types of wine that are meant to be stored to last for longer periods under the right conditions.

General Rules for Storage

Here are some general rules when it comes to all types of wine:
-Red wine last 2 to 3 years past its expiration date.
-White wine lasts 1 to 2 years past expiration date.
-Cooking wine lasts 3 to 5 years past the expiration date.

However, once the bottle is opened, it’s exposed to aerial bacteria that causes it to expire way faster than it’s supposed to be. Once you’ve decided that you’re ready to start your collection, you need to keep in mind a few measures to ensure that your bottles would be as tasty as it should be.

How to store wine properly

If you’re going to invest in vintage wine, then you need to know everything there is to know to make sure that you’re retaining its value.The way you store your wine is the key factor in determining how long your wine is gonna last. Keeping your wine under the suitable conditions will guarantee that it would taste even better with time.

Here are the conditions you’ll need to consider to properly store your wine:

1. Temperature
Heat is the most dangerous thing for wine. If the house temperature is high, the probability that it gets spoiled is also high. A temperature of 21 degrees can cause your bottle to age more quickly, and if it keeps rising it can cause flat flavors and aromas. The perfect temperature to store your bottles is between 7 and 18 degrees. Keeping your room temperature cool and constant is the best way to preserve your wine, as fluctuating temperatures and also harms your drink. You should also know that the side effects of temperature don’t show in the short term, so if you’re planning on drinking it within a year or so, you shouldn’t worry about it. Just keep it away from radiators and other heat sources.

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2. Light
The light has a very negative effect on wine, especially on white and light-colored wines. It’s one of the main reasons vintners use colored bottles, as the shade of these bottles is what protects the wine from the UV rays of the sun. Because direct sunlight can degrade the wine and cause it to age prematurely. It’s much better to store the wine in a dark place away from strong lights such as halogen bulbs or spotlights to make sure it lasts longer. Incandescent bulbs are much safer than fluorescent bulbs, as UV rays they emit are way less.

3. Positioning
When the bottle is still unopened, it’s better to keep it lying on its side, to make sure the cork stays moist. As the wine will keep the cork from drying out causing bacteria to get in. However, if your wine is screw-capped and stored in a rustic wine cabinet, then it doesn’t matter whether you store it horizontally or vertically. Rustic cabinet is the safest and most proper way to store your wine for as long as you want. It all depends on the type of wood and temperature.

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4. Humidity
If the air gets dry, it can cause the cork of the bottle to dry out, leading to seepage and air bubbles. And if the humidity is too much, mold could grow on the cork and even on the bottle itself. The ideal humidity level is around 70%, but for the average bottle of wine, a humidity level between 50% and 80% is totally fine. Only fancy wine bottles require a controlled environment to keep them safe.

5. Movement
A chemical reaction can be caused if the wine was shaken. So you should keep it somewhere where it can stay still with no movements, as the vibrations can mess with the wine’s sediments, stopping it from settling, which can lead to a gritty wine bottle. If you’re planning on storing your bottle for a long time, you should keep it away from any excessive vibrations such as your washing machine, but in the short term this won’t cause you any trouble.

After considering all the key factors affecting the storage of your wine, you must still keep in mind that not all types of wine are the same. Some types of wine are not made to be stored for long periods, so when you’re buying your bottles you should ask if this bottle is meant to last or not.