01438 741177         thewinesociety.com

The Society's Community

Going away for the summer how to store wine?

Hi,

Pending some final approvals from work to work remotely, I will be making it back to the old-old country on the continent to spend 6+ weeks with my family leaving behind my wine in 2 bed upper maisonette flat.

I have a small wine fridge (68 bottles) that is already at capacity, and then two wine racks with approximately one 70 or so other bottles. One rack is in a cabinet in the living room, the other underside the working table in the 2nd bedroom.

I will close off the flat, the shades down, however given its a period property I do not have air conditioning and during heat waves it does get hot - it usually is the similar temperature to outside, mostly low 20s during the summer but it does peak up to high 20s and even 30s if we have the heat wave.

Is it worth while taking the most precious wines and putting them in the fridge for the period of 6 weeks or leaving on the wine racks?

I looked at offsite storage, Big Yellow Storage wants something like £8 per week which is pretty pricey - also considering I do not have the car, need to get boxes etc. it will become a hassle quite quickly.

What would you do? Any thoughts?

Thanks

If you have an open fireplace, remove the trappings and lay your best bottles in the space wrapped in newspaper to keep clean in the fireplace. There is usually a draft. It’s where we used to keep milk in summer in the days before we had refrigerators.
Alternatively, use a tiled floor and lay them on the floor. Heat rises remember so keep them low. It might be a hassle to move everything but should be worth it.

4 Likes

Yeah, keep them low, but try to keep them together and covered. Something to do with thermal mass and lower heat gain.

3 Likes

If you can, try and keep them away from any exterior walls too.

If it’s just for 6 weeks, then I wouldn’t think low 20’s would too them any harm, unless you’ve got any particularly old and delicate wines. I lived in a first floor flat for a few years and kept stuff in the bottom of a wardrobe. The longest I kept anything was about 5 years (having previously been kept on top of a different wardrobe before moving to the flat) and it was still fantastic when it was opened.

3 Likes

Good advice above. Cold drafts are good, and I imagine they would be cold in a fireplace, but with wine it would be the actual temperature that is is important (not the wind chill effect that makes drafts pleasant to humans on hot days).

I also wouldn’t hestitate to put wine in a normal fridge for several weeks. Turn the temperature up to try to minimise tartate crystal formation if that might bother you.

Keep them in the dark too, to prevent lightstrike - though you should really do that anyway.

For that length of time I personally wouldn’t fret much about temperatures in the 20s. Not so sure about approaching and exceeding 30.

1 Like

I would go with what everyone else has suggested and also your own suggestion of prioritising cabinet space for your more precious wines.

1 Like

Don’t worry about it. It never gets hot enough in the UK to damage wine, as long as it’s kept in a sensible place. I’ve got hundreds of bottles at home (S England) which have been here through 15 summers or more - never had a bottle that i felt was heat-affected.

1 Like

as @suiko says…should be ok - but don’t tell my wife as she will want to know why we built a cellar !

couple of little tricks (not all relevant for summer time):

  • Make sure you aren’t storing in the room where the master radiator is ( this is the one with no vales / controllers on the pipes)
  • store in the middle of the room or against a north facing wall - basically keep it away from walls influenced by the sun
  • keep it as low to the floor as possible - quite a difference in temp from the floor to ceiling
  • bathrooms are normally cooler due to tiling and ceramics (just not near the hot water tank etc)
  • try to keep them in one block in an insulted cardboard box - thermal mass
3 Likes

What i do on the few occasions it does get warm (has never been over a couple of weeks this century) is follow Mediterranean habits - close all curtains and windows during day and open them all after midnight till about 5 am.

Won’t be so easy for @pred02 to do all the way from Croatia, though… :slight_smile:

But you’re right - this brought back vivid memories of my mum shutting all the curtains during the day, and coming back from school to a cool(ish) apartment.

it’s what we’ve done for years…with one addition - we open t downstairs door first thing in the morning to get some cooler air in

Ah yes. Might be tricky doing it from Croatia. Probably not as tricky as actually going to Croatia, though. Or indeed anywhere :roll_eyes:

1 Like

home automation…motors on curtain tracks…been done for years :wink:

1 Like

Ah, us Israelis are clearly behind the times! :smiley:

1 Like

I am surprised no one has yet suggested just drinking more!

4 Likes

Or just make Alexa earn her keep!

2 Likes

I was going to put…‘can always ask me to look after it’…but at that point I the thread we were still being sensible and helpful :wink:

3 Likes

I’ve been trying so hard to not suggest that for as long as this thread has been in existence!

1 Like