Join Us & Get Wine 101 Course 75% Off

Wines Like It Cool, Dark, and Moist

Written by Madeline Puckette

If you’re planning to store your wine in the closet this might not be such a good idea. A recent study in Northern Italy showed that wines age 4 times faster when stored at room temperature.

Find out more about how to keep your wine happy and learn what to do if you do plan on starting a wine collection.

Wine Cellar Storage Temperature Best Practices

Wine Storage Temperature

The ideal wine storage temperature is 55 – 59 °F (12 – 15 °C) and 55 – 75% humidity.

Wine Ages 4 Times Faster at Room Temperature

Dr. Fulvio Mattivis, a food scientist at Fondazione Edmund Mach, gathered 400 bottles of Tuscan wine and placed half of them in a professional cellar and the other half in a dark room designed to mimic the natural temperature fluctuations of a home closet. Over the course of 2 years, he compared the wines chemical structure and taste.

“your bedroom closet is no place for wine.”

After the testing was all done, Mattivis concluded that the ‘closet wines’ were no good. They lost antioxidants and color at a rate that was 4 times faster than the cellar wines. Additionally, there were chemical reactions in the ‘closet wines’ that indicated they were more prone to wine faults. While Mattivis may have ‘killed’ 200 bottles of Tuscan wine to prove his point, we now have scientific proof that your bedroom closet is no place for wine.

Argh! I Don’t Have a Cellar, Now What?

If you don’t have a proper cellar you have a few options:

Start drinking

This might just be the perfect excuse to start drinking through your cellar. In the future, you can simply change your buying habits for short term wine consumption. We think you can get away with about a year of aging as long as your storage area never exceeds 80°F (26.6 °C).

Store your wines professionally

It will cost you about $3.50 per case per month. What’s cool about this option is that pro cellars have great perks including insuring your wine, built-in potential buyers and tools to manage your wine collection. For example, we were particularly impressed with the concept of phenol 55.

Get a wine cooler

A decent wine cooler that’s designed for aging will actually be a little loud because it needs a condenser and a fan. While thermoelectric units are great for short term (and also very quiet), they fluctuate too much in temperature for long-term storage.

Other Ways You Can Accidentally Destroy Your Wine

Turns out you can kill your wine even before it goes into your cellar. This happens often during wine country visits.

Written byMadeline Puckette

James Beard Award-winning author and Wine Communicator of the Year. I co-founded Wine Folly to help people learn about wine. @WineFolly

Join Our Newsletter

Jumpstart your wine education and subscribe to the Wine Folly newsletter right now. Always awesome. Always free.

sign up free