The storage of wine is a key element to preserve its flavor. We can’t forget about the proper serving and it’s not only about the label, such as from which side to pour the wine or where to place the glass of a certain shape, but about a more technical matter, that is, the temperature at which the drinks should be served.
Wine should be stored at the right temperature. Of all the factors that affect the quality of stored wine, it is the most important.Inappropriately high or low temperatures are a sure way to spoil a wine. The ideal temperature for long-term or short-term storage of wine is around 13ºC, but this can vary at depending on the wine
For temperature recommendations for specific wines, consult the manufacturer. Regardless of type or label, wine should never be stored below -4º C, which can cause wine to freeze, or above 20º C, which can accelerate the maturation process and destroy volatile compounds. Most importantly, the wine storage temperature should be as stable as possible: fluctuations can cause the cork to expand and contract, allowing air to leak or enter.
Bottles should be stored horizontally. For bottles with corks, store wine horizontally in a wine rack. Keeping it on its side helps keep the cork moist, which is crucial for long-term storage, as a dried out cork can cause leaks and premature aging. While it’s not necessary to keep resealable wine bottles on their sides, horizontal storage is also an effective way to do so, providing maximum space and easy access.
Protect wine from light and vibration. Whether you store for months, weeks or days, keep your wine in the dark as long as possible. UV rays from direct sunlight can damage the flavor and aroma of wine. Also, keep it away from sources of vibration, such as your washer and dryer, exercise area or stereo system. Vibration can interfere with sedimentation in the bottle, disrupting the delicate process that causes wines to age favorably.
Store wine in a wine cooler rather than a regular refrigerator. If you don’t have a place to store wine that’s constantly cool, dark and damp, a wine cooler is a good idea. Unlike a standard refrigerator, which keeps food very cold and dry, a wine refrigerator keeps wine at 10-15˚Cand at the right humidity. Storing wine in a separate refrigerator also helps prevent food odors from carrying contamination
Serve wine at the right temperature. When preparing to serve a stored bottle to other wine lovers, wait until it has reached the proper serving temperature. This ensures the full expression of the aroma and flavor of the wine. Red wine should be served chilled slightly below room temperature, between 12-19˚C. Red wines with stronger tannins should be kept at the warmer end of the temperature spectrum than lighter red wines. White wine should be chilled between 8-12˚C. Sparkling white wines should be at the cooler end of the spectrum, as should sweet white wines. Champagne should be served at the lowest temperature of all 5-8˚C.
When serving wine, it should be done in a glass that is transparent so you can appreciate the color. It should be served in a regular wine glass or a crystal glass. Some people like to use glassware of different shapes for different types of wine. Red wine glasses are wider than other types and have a large volume. The reason why red wine glasses are wider is because it has to be rotated around to come in contact with the air. The wider area helps with this. White wine glasses are smaller than red wine glasses and are tulip shaped. The smaller area prevents the glass from heating up too quickly. Sparkling wine glasses are tall and thin. This keeps it cooler and allows air bubbles to form.
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