I am a huge wine drinker and I’m not really picky, but I do prefer Chardonnay usually. Wine does not stay around long in this house but when you have a few bottles or one you are saving for a special occasion you want to know how to store and serve wine properly.
How to Store Wine:
- The ideal condition for storing wine is dark and cool around 54F (12C). A closet, under the bed or your basement, is ideal. Wine hates UV light because it prematurely ages it.
- Consistency is more important than coolness, so keep it in a place that does not fluctuate much.
- Store bottles in a rack or on their side so the cork does not dry out. When the cork dries out it shrinks and lets in too much oxygen which can turn your wine rancid.
- Keep it still and don’t move it much. Too much shaking will disturb the sediments in red wine giving you a glass of grit instead of wine.
Now that you know how to store your wine, now we need to learn how to serve wine cold or warm? To decant or not to decant that is the question!
How to Serve Wine:
- As a general rule of thumb, serve white cold and red at room temp. Many experts agree you should not serve wine over 60 degrees but to me the colder the better for white wine. If you are chilling it in the fridge it takes about 3 hours. If you are using an ice bucket, about 20 minutes.
- Decanting – Decanting is the process of pouring a bottle of wine into another vessel for serving. Its purpose is to separate the wine from the sediment at the bottom of the bottle which will make your wine more astringent. Decanting is also used to aerate younger wines and give them more oxygen so they are fuller in flavor. There are two ways to decant wine, straight into a glass wine decanter and let it sit for 25-30 minutes or use a wine aerator for immediate gratification. Wines to decant include- Bordeaux, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, and their blends.
- Use the right glass – Red wines need a wider glass with a larger bowl. White wine glasses are narrower and have more of a U-shaped bowl.
Now I can’t believe anyone reading this would actually leave an opened bottle with wine in it and not drink it all (wink wink), but in case you do these rabbit bottle stoppers are my absolute favorite. They create a solid seal and you can lay your bottle flat in your fridge and it won’t drip at all. You will want to drink that bottle within 2 days or it will start to go rancid. Now you are on your first steps to enjoying your wine more. What’s your favorite wine tip?