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5 expert tips on how to store fine wine

By LLM Reporters on 6th November 2019

We’ve all heard the saying ‘like a fine wine, you get better with age’- but what if we told you that fine wine can deteriorate if stored in the incorrect conditions?

Particularly if you are investing in high-end wine, storing it professionally in controlled conditions is vital to increase its value, keep the wine fresh and allow the wine to reach its full potential.

To navigate you through the storage process, the experts at Cult Wines have whittled it down to 5 top tips on how to store fine wine.

1 – Keep a steady temperature

Heat is not a friend to fine wine. In fact, heat is the number one reason your wine may lack flavour and taste flat. The best temperature to store your wine at is 12-13 degrees centigrade, as any higher or lower could damage your wine. If the temperature is too low, it could potentially freeze your wine or push the cork out. Therefore, it is important to maintain a consistent temperature as this will ensure that your wine matures correctly and increases in its value.

It is recommended that you store you wine lying down. This way, the liquid can hit the cork preventing it from drying out and creating a musty, unpleasant flavour in your wine

2 – Control the lighting

There is a reason wine cellars and storage units are so dark. It is important to keep your wine bottle shaded from the dark as too much light can result in premature ageing. Sunlight and UV rays can also increase the temperature of your wine, which can substantially alter the taste of your wine for the worse. This is why wine is generally stored in coloured bottles such as green and amber. Opt for a storage unit which uses LED light, as this provides enough light to navigate around the facility whilst not giving off any heat.

3 – Keep bottles facing down and control the humidity

It is recommended that you store you wine lying down. This way, the liquid can hit the cork preventing it from drying out and creating a musty, unpleasant flavour in your wine. You also want to stop your cork drying out on the outside too, which is why some humidity is required. This will stop air being let into the bottle which will spoil the wines taste. Be sure not to store your wine in a facility that is too humid, as the valuable bottle’s label might damage, and mould could harbour.

Don’t shake the bottles as some serious enthusiasts believe that even the subtlest of vibrations can affect the taste and colour of your wine

4 – Don’t shake the bottle

There are varying theories on whether shaking your bottle of wine can ruin it. Some serious enthusiasts believe that even the subtlest of vibrations can affect the taste and colour of your wine. This is due to the sediment at the bottom of the bottle being stirred into the rest of your wine, creating a gritty and lacking flavour. The sediment can also change the colour of your wine, causing rich reds to dull and whites to cloud. For long term storage, it is best to store your wine in a unit away from any harmful vibrations.

5 – Protect your investment

It is important to protect your investment. If you are a serious wine enthusiast, it might be time to consider investing in professional storage. This way, you can store your wine where there are the most optimal conditions to increase its value and taste, without having to worry about the maintenance and rules of correct bottle storage. Furthermore, if you are selling your wine at an auction it will give your buyers confidence that it was stored correctly, therefore further increasing the value of your fine wine.

The best temperature to store your wine at is 12-13 degrees centigrade, as any higher or lower could damage your wine