As any avid wine drinker knows, having bottles on hand to enjoy at home and growing a collection is part of the fun. Your collection may be a few bottles on a wine rack or a few dozen bottles on a wine wall or enough to fill a wine cellar. No matter the size of your wine collection, proper storage and serving temperature is key to the preservation and enjoyment of the wine.
Ideally wine should be stored horizontal, with moderate humidity (62-68%), and a constant 55° temperature. A climate-controlled wine wall, wine room, or wine cellar will ensure that these requirements are not only met but maintained at all times for optimal long and short-term storage.
When it comes to enjoying wine the ideal serving temperature varies from whites to reds and even sparkling wine. While we do offer dual zone wine storage systems, most of our clients choose a single zone system. Here are some best practices to proper serving temperatures:
White Wine - optimal serving temperature: 52-62°
If you are storing your wine in a single zone wine room or wine cellar, and maintaining the recommended 55° setting, white wines will be ready to serve at the correct temperature. If you prefer your white wine on the colder side, place your bottle in the refrigerator for an hour or two prior to serving. White wine should never be stored in the fridge as the colder temperature degrades the wine.
Pro-Tip: The higher the quality of white wine, the less cold it should be.
Red Wines - optimal serving temperature: 62-68°
Most people say red wine should be served at “room temperature”. But did you know that the term “room temperature” came about in the days of stone, cold castles not today’s comfy, insulated homes? Serving red wine at “room temperature” in today’s home will more than likely be too warm. Red wine is enjoyed best on the cooler side. Although climate-controlled wine storage is ideal for long-term storage and preservation it is too cold for serving.
Pro-Tip: The key is to bring wine out of the wine cellar and open it 30 minutes prior to serving to reach proper temperature as well as time for the wine to open up and breathe.
Sparkling Wines and Champagne - optimal serving temperature: 40-50°
The same that is true for white wines, not to store long-term in the refrigerator, is also true for sparkling wines and champagne. But bubbly should be properly chilled before enjoying so pop it in the fridge the night before you plan to serve it.
Wondering what to do with leftover wine?
On the off chance, you have left-over wine here’s how to store it for enjoyment later:
- White wines can be recorked and put back in the fridge. It will keep well for 2-3 days before it loses its flavor.
- Red wines should also be put in the fridge after opening. It will keep its flavors and aromas longer than whites, typically 3-5 days. The key is to take the bottle out an hour or so before serving to bring the temperature up a bit.
- Sparkling Wine or Champagne will keep several days in the fridge with a good stopper.
Pro-Tip: to get the cork back in the bottle, turn the cork upside down and it will fit right in snuggly.
A final note: Once the wine is past its prime pour it into ice trays, freeze it, and use it later to flavor stocks, soups, or gravy.
If you have a temperature-controlled wine cellar or wine room, it takes some of the guess work out of storing wine properly. Your red wines can go right from your wine cellar to the table for the perfect temperature. Your white wines will require less time in the fridge to chill. Long-term, your wines will keep best and age well in a temperature-controlled environment.
Want to learn more about proper wine storage? Contact one of our wine cellar design experts today. Vineyard Wine Cellars is the leading provider of wine cellars for enthusiasts seeking inspired solutions for the preservation and enjoyment of their collection. We source state-of-the-art products and materials in wine cellar cooling, construction, finishes, lighting, and racks to provide wine storage solutions for all applications and to suit any design style. For over 20 years, Vineyard Wine Cellars has earned a reputation as the premier wine storage provider by bringing ingenuity and quality workmanship to the process of designing and installing award-winning wine cellars. Browse our gallery and contact us at 866-973-1100 or firstname.lastname@example.org.