The most important facts about wine storage

Achieve optimal storage temperature for red and white wine with modern wine storage technology

If you buy your wines directly from the winegrower or wine merchant, the basis is already right in terms of storage. Here, the storage conditions of the wines are usually paid close attention to. But what happens after that? Off with the box on the kitchen shelf? Or placed representatively in the dining room? For short-term enjoyment, of course, but for medium- or long-term storage, the following applies in short: cool, damp, dark.

But why is that so important?
What exactly do I have to pay attention to?
And what are the biggest mistakes?
At what point is it perhaps too cool and too damp?

It is a recurring theme among wine lovers that wines are often drunk too young. High-quality wines have the potential to mature further through proper storage and thus develop further in terms of taste and aroma. Good wine is therefore not exclusively a question of the cultivation and the producer. The fact is that anyone who wants to get the best out of a good drop right up to the final enjoyment also has to worry about storage after purchase.

Storage temperature of red wine, white wine and co. - and why it is so important

Wines generally like to be stored in a damp, dark and cool place. Temperature fluctuations have a particularly damaging effect on the stored treasures and should therefore be avoided altogether. The heated living room in winter may provide a nice place for the decorative red wine collection, but it has a negative effect on the wines due to its warmth and brightness. The classic wine cellar convinces with constant temperature and humidity and also excludes harmful UV light. Conventional wine refrigerators are also ideal for guaranteeing the ideal storage conditions for selected wines. If wine is stored too warm, it matures virtually in fast motion. If it is stored too cold, new aromascannotdevelop. The ideal storage temperature for all wines is therefore between 8 and 13 degrees.

The perfect place for my wine

In principle, almost any place is suitable where a stable and cool temperature, as well as a reasonably constant and high humidity can be guaranteed and the wine is protected from sunlight.

Naturally, this is best done in a wine cellar - with or without additional air conditioning. But wine refrigerators equipped with special glass or walk-in glass rooms are also possible, as long as they meet the aforementioned requirements. All this, of course, only if the wine is not intended for quick consumption - with a few bottles in the kitchen, even the UV for a few weeks plays a rather subordinate role.

However, if you are stocking up for the long term, storage is a decisive factor. The temperature in the kitchen, for example, tends to rise to well over 20 degrees during cooking. In addition to the light, the changing temperature also puts a strain on the wine. Decoratively lined-up red wines that would reach their optimum maturity after five years under good storage conditions can taste old and tired after just one year.

So wine feels right at home

Maturing wine likes it quiet, dark and unexcited. It loves a constant climate and abhors sunlight and temperature fluctuations.

The temperature should be in the range of 8° to 13°C. Relative humidity is particularly relevant for wines sealed with a natural cork - which still applies to most high-quality wines. It should be between 50 and 70% rLf. UV destroys the wine. Fast. Very quickly. The dark glass can only keep a small part of the UV radiation away from the wine. Therefore: get out of the sun. Attention: LED lamps can also emit the wine-damaging UV. Here you should pay attention to the wavelength when using them in the storage room.

Measurements with the novel Sensorbottle have shown that even cellars equipped with special aggregates are subject to a relatively high temperature fluctuation. In addition, the temperature in the different air layers deviates by up to 2°C. A wine that is permanently exposed to a regular air temperature fluctuation of only 1°C will absorb about 1.3kWh of heat in a year with a fluctuation period of 4 hours. That is easily enough to bring ten liters of water to the boil.

As a general rule, wines - regardless of whether they are red or white - have identical wishes at the ripening stage: dark, stable temperature, not too dry, not too humid and definitely not UV light.


Correct storage for maximum flavor.

If wine is stored correctly between 8 and 13 degrees Celsius, it can keep for many years at high initial quality. The ideal storage temperature can be measured particularly well with the new Sensorbottle . This provides current temperature data on the mobile device and simulates values inside a bottle using reference liquid. During the storage period, red wines in particular develop their full and complex aroma due to theirhighertannin content. However, white wines are also stored for longer and longer periods of time and develop new aromas and a variety of flavors over time due to their acidity. When the wines are ready for consumption after an individual storage period, they should be taken out of the cellar or wine refrigerator some time before drinking, so that theycanslowly adapt to room temperature. For the optimal drinking temperature, white wines are known to be chilledand red wines are chambrated.

What influences the drinking maturity of the wine?

The warmer a wine is stored, the faster it matures. The unair-conditioned living room, for example, has the effect of a time-lapse.

The more aromas from the vine and the soil are found in the wine, the more concentrated and dense it is. And the better its potential for further aging and storage. If the wine ages in the right way, even more interesting aromas develop.

If it is too warm (>13°C), wine unintentionally ripens quickly and cannot develop its aroma ideally or even loses value. Even worse are strong temperature fluctuations, as they often occur in living rooms - here 5°C fluctuation over the day is not uncommon. The wine is practically "overcooked" in the process.

The storage temperature is something like the gas pedal in wine maturation; the higher the temperature, the faster the wine matures. This also applies to the range between 8 and 12°C, which is often referred to as the target corridor. From a temperature of about 7°C and lower, hardly any ripening takes place. This temperature is therefore also ideal for slowing down the ripening of wines at their peak. Nevertheless, no wine lasts forever. It is made for drinking and that is exactly what we should do with a wine at its peak: enjoy it.

Why doesn't the wine remain in the barrel with the producer until it is finally matured?

More and more wine producers are moving to shorten their wines earlier barrel aging in favor of bottle aging.

Too long storage in wooden barrels risks that wines lose their freshness. They become weakened and tired. Wineries that used to age their high-quality wines in wooden barrels for up to seven years, for example, now bottle them after four years at the latest and refine them further in them. The wines become more balanced and harmonious due to a better fusion of aromas and the integration of tannin and acidity.

In the case of long-lived wines, aging in the bottle is a process of development that often takes years, until they reach their peak - in extreme cases - only after many years before they degrade again. Decisive, therefore, is the time from when a wine goes on sale, where each producer has his own philosophy. What is certain, however, is that in addition to one's own standards, economic factors and limited storage possibilities also influence the decision.

What wines can I store?

The shelf life of wines is essentially dependent on four factors: Residual sugar, acidity, tannin and alcohol.

Red wine

Red wines are traditionally more suited to aging due to the tannin present, although many white wines also have excellent storage characteristics.

When it comes to red wine, one reaches for tannin-rich varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Nebbiolo, or Sangiovese. A true tannin bomb is the Tannat. This grape variety is often grown in the French Madiran. Tannat wines are often only drinkable after 5 to 20 years of bottle aging.

White wine

In recent years, the aging of white wines has become increasingly popular. Here, the acidity takes over the guarantee of long storage.

Rieslings of high quality, such as Große Gewächse of the VDP, are therefore optimal. Spätlesen ripen more slowly, but are traditionally also well suited for storage.

What is the best way to monitor the storage of my wines?

The possibilities from a simple hygrometer to a completely smart system are manifold.

A simple hygrometer in the wine cellar shows the current situation in terms of humidity and temperature when you walk into the cellar. So far so good: However, it is and remains only a snapshot at the respective view of the display. But what temperature fluctuations is the wine exposed to over time? Does one notice a failure of the air conditioning only when it is too late? Simply leaving the wines to themselves is risky, especially with larger stocks.

Smart systems that digitally transmit the measured values at regular intervals and also display a historical development offer much safer monitoring. Whether as a single measuring instrument in the storeroom or as a completely digitally designed system such as the VinoViaVai. This actively monitors and reports to the smartphone all relevant values and movements: Outside temperature, humidity, UV radiation in individual zones and more. The convenience here even extends to the removal detection of individual bottles. The high-quality wine furniture also looks so good that it can even be placed in the home with active cooling or air conditioning.

In the royal class of measuring instruments for wine storage plays the novel Sensorbottle. This reports every minute to the smartphone or tablet how the overall storage situation affects the wine. The special feature here is that the Sensorbottle not only measures the situation in the storage room, but also uses a reference liquid inside to simulate how the values affect the wine itself inside the bottle. If all values match the stored corridor, the display of the bottle tells me "YOUR WINE FEELS PERFECT".

What are absolute no go's when it comes to storage?

Those who do not buy their wine for immediate consumption should avoid the following at all costs:

> Storage temperature too high

> Temperature fluctuations

> Trockene Luft (<50% rLh.)

> Air too humid (>75% rLh.)

> Scratched labels
Often happens during storage in bricks

> Store wines with cork upright

> Red wines or full-bodied white wines
rotate during storage
(deposit is shaken up)

Thus, after opening the bottle, nothing stands in the way of the final moment of enjoyment.



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