For the Love of Wine
To enhance your love of wine, you need to carefully consider how you're storing wine and serving wine. Follow our guide to make every drop memorable for all the right reasons.
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Australian winemakers are a finicky bunch. From site selection and varietal choice to picking method and barrel use, every decision they make is done with care and consideration. This ensures that the wine you serve is the very best representation of variety, region and vintage.
But you have a very important role to play in this process, too. And not just in terms of savouring every drop. How you store and serve your wine will ensure you enjoy the fruits of our winemakers’ labour.
The first thing to consider is where you store your wine collection. As World’s Best Sommelier and Vintec Global Brand Ambassador Arvid Rosengren describes, “Any serious wine lover should care about how their wines are being stored. Proper care of your bottles is essential in order to allow the wine to evolve as the winemaker planned.”
Temperature is an important concern – if it’s too hot, you risk compromising the seal and allowing air into the bottle, or high temperatures can even ‘cook’ your wine. If it’s too cold, you’ll slow down the ageing process (although this is less of a problem in the Australian climate).
What is important to consider in Australia is the humidity level, especially if you have wines sealed under cork. Too low and the corks can dry out, too high and you risk mould and mildew on your labels.
A constant temperature of 12ºC to 14ºC is ideal, as is a humidity level between 50% to 60% relative humidity. You also need to think about the effects of light, as too much can cause chemical changes. And vibration matters, too. Constant movement, even small tremors, can disturb wine and disrupt its ageing process.
Wine Cellar Solutions
One of the best ways to keep your wine at the ideal temperature and humidity levels, as well as safe from the damaging effects of light and vibration, is with a wine cabinet or cellar.
While there is an initial cost to buying a cabinet or cellar, with a huge range of styles, sizes and price points, there is a solution for every need and budget. And the benefits of having your wines stored in perfect conditions are worth the investment.
Speaking of needs, that’s one of the first things to consider when selecting a cabinet or cellar. As Robin Werth, Marketing Manager for Andi-co Australia, distributors of Liebherr cabinets describes, “When looking for a wine cabinet, the first thing to consider is: are you looking for a cabinet in which to store, age and condition your wine, or are you looking for a cabinet to store your wines at a temperature ideal for immediate serving?”
State-of-the-art cabinets like Liebherr’s can create conditions ideal for cellaring, as well as keep certain drops ready to serve at a moment’s notice.
Robin adds that, “The second thing to consider is size and integration. Do you want a tall unit or will it fit under a counter or benchtop? Will it be integrated into cabinetry or will it be freestanding?”
These days wine cabinets from brands like Liebherr and Husky, as well as Vintec cellars, are as sleek and fashionable as they are functional. From an under bench cabinet for your kitchen, a taller capacity unit for home or business, or a walk-in model for a dedicated cellar, there is a wine cabinet or cellar that will fit seamlessly into your life, with capacities from 20 bottles to 4000 bottles.
Of course, if you’ve got the room, building a permanent wine cellar in your home is the ultimate wine storage solution. Again, you need to consider temperature, humidity, light and vibration levels, but you also need to plan the layout and design, and how you’ll ensure the security of your precious collection.
That’s where Cellarack can help. With a huge range of wine racks to choose from, they can help you design the perfect cellar solution. Whether you’re creating a functional space to keep your selection secure, or you’re looking for the ‘wow’ factor in a space that’s for both storing and enjoying your wines, Cellarack has a solution.
Once you’ve aged your wine to perfection, or you’re about to enjoy the fresh flavours of a drink-now drop, the glassware you choose can make a huge difference. The shape, size and quality of your glass will help determine the aromatic and flavour characters you enjoy.
Typically, lighter-bodied white wines like Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc are best served in a glass with a smaller bowl. This helps to keep it cool and to concentrate and amplify the floral aromatics of these delicate styles. While for fuller-bodied whites like Chardonnay, go for a glass with a larger bowl to really bring out and enhance the creamy texture of the varietal.
Overall, red wines are best served in larger-bowled glasses, and there are generally two red wine glass shapes – Bordeaux and Burgundy. The larger bowl of red wine glasses allows you to not only get your nose in to smell the aromas, but it also brings more air into contact with the wine, releasing the flavours and softening the tannins.
Schott Zwiesel has a glass to suit every wine you enjoy!
Make Your Wine Last Longer...
How long does open wine last? When you’ve shared half a bottle one night, and want to save the rest for another occasion, it’s important to minimise its exposure to oxygen. This is because too much oxygen causes a chemical reaction that results in a loss of the beautiful fruity aromas. It can also cause your wine to turn brown and
While there are stoppers available, and keeping a wine under screw cap in the fridge can aid its preservation, the best way to keep your opened wine in its prime for longer is by adding food grade argon to the bottle.
That’s what Winesave uses in its sleek, easy-to-dispense canisters to protect your wine. As Matthew Fisher of Winesave describes, there are three great reasons why argon is the best choice. “Firstly, it’s completely inert, making it physically impossible for it to react with anything, so it cannot mess with your wine. Secondly, it’s tasteless, odourless and colourless, so it will not change the way your wine tastes, smells, or looks. Finally, it’s heavier than air – it will sink below the air in your bottle, forming a natural protective layer on top of your wine.”