Wine Storage & Optimal Temperatures
Temperature, the unseen and often neglected factor, can bring the best and worst out of a bottle of wine in 2 areas: storing and serving wine.
Storing Wine and Useful Tips:
Sadly, many great wine collections have been damaged because of instability in temperature and moisture. High temperature above 65 degrees F. causes the wine to age prematurely, thus losing its flavor and balance.
When chilled too cold, the wine also loses its flavor and aromas.
Keep the wines away from sunlight and heat exposure; store them in cellars, wine fridge, and or temperature controlled rooms.
Wide fluctuation in temperature will damage the wine and the cork.
Ideal range of temperature for storing red wine is 50-5 degrees F. White wines can be stored at lower ranges at 45 degrees F.
Humidity is another important fine balance. If the humidity is too high, mold can grow and cellar woods and wine labels can be damaged.
If the environment is too dry, the cork will crack and air will leak into the bottle, again ruining the wine. Ideal humidity for wine storage ranges from 60-75%.
If you have a wine collection that you don't want to ruin but live in a very hot or cold environment, it is worthwhile to invest in a wine fridge or wine cellar. Alternatively, you can see if your local wine stores offer wine storage services. Store your wine horizontally so that the cork is moist. This will minimize the probability of the cork cracking and undesired air entering the bottle.
Don't leave a wine bottle in the freezer. Frozen, the wine will expand and the bottle will explode. This is a very dangerous method of chilling wine. Don’t Do It!
Serving Temperature and Useful Tips:
Wines should be served at a temperature that best reveals its characteristics and aromas. The optimal serving temperature differs for various wines, depending on their grape variety and their region. For example, rich, intense Bordeaux could be served 1-2 degree below room temperature, but a light, fruity red such as Beaujolais is best serve at least 6 degree below room temperature.
Typical temperature for storing red wine ranges from 52 degrees F – 65 degrees F, and 45 degrees F- 50 degrees F for white wines. Champagne/sparkling wine should normally be served around 40 degrees F.