Wine storage: our top 6 tips

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Do you love fine wines and are wondering how to store them? In order to preserve all its flavour qualities, Maison Calvet gives you 6 tips on how to best store your wine. Follow these simple rules to manage your wine cellar like a pro!

Tip no. 1: a constant temperature

The ideal temperature for storing wine is between 10 and 14 degrees Celsius. Temperatures that are too high can speed up the ageing process of the wine and alter its aromas, while temperatures that are too low can slow down this process and prevent the wine from fully developing. So avoid storing your wine in places that are too hot or too cold, but rather in a wine cellar or closed cupboard.

Tip no.2: humidity

Humidity must be maintained above 70% for wine storage. Excess humidity can cause mould to form on the bottles, or to the contrary, dry out the corks and therefore allow air to enter the bottle. In order to maintain an ideal humidity level, use a hygrometer to measure the relative humidity of the air and add water if necessary.

Tip no. 3: light

Protect your bottles from artificial or natural light. Ultraviolet rays alter the quality of the wine’s shelf life, causing significant deterioration. To maintain the quality, a wine cellar or closed cupboard remain the best options.

Tip no.4: a horizontal position for better wine preservation

Keep your bottles out of view to prevent the cork from drying out and the wine from oxidising. To store your wine bottles, choose a horizontal stand that keeps the cork in contact with the wine.

Tip no. 5: aeration for wine storage

In a wine cellar, proper air circulation prevents mould and unpleasant odours. This is why it is important to have a ventilation system with a slow and constant air filter.

Tip no. 6: ageing wine

In general terms, which wines can be aged? It all depends on the difference in grape varieties, their structure and aromatic complexity. Some wines can be aged for longer than others and continue to improve – these are known as “vins de garde” or wines for laying down. A wine from the Loire Valley can reach its peak after between 2 and 4 years, while a Grand Cru Bordeaux can reveal its full potential after 10 or even 15 years in the cellar. Note that Alsace wines can be enjoyed after 1 to 4 years in the cellar. Red Burgundy can be aged for a minimum of 6 years to a maximum of 8 years, except for Grands Crus from the Côte d’Or, which can take up to 20 years’ ageing. White Burgundies, however, can be aged for 2 years, as can white and rosé wines from Provence, while wines from Languedoc-Roussillon can be aged for between 2 and 3 years.

Generally speaking, red and white wines age best when they have a higher level of acidity, as they are less likely to deteriorate over the years.

— Wednesday 13 December 2023 by Olivier