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The Art of Aging Wine

Like Belgian chocolate or fine cheese, wine is a perishable food. Exposed to fluctuations in light, heat, temperature, or humidity, any wine will spoil. But unlike chocolate, many wines have the potential to actually improve over time in taste and quality.

The process of aging wine has long been a form of culinary art. The aging of wine is a delicate procedure that walks the fine line between ruining the wine and improving it. Under the wrong conditions, the ethanol in wine will oxidize and turn into acetic acid, more commonly known as vinegar, rendering the wine undrinkable. But the right storage conditions will prevent oxidation while allowing chemical reactions between the wine's sugars, acids, and phenolic compounds to subtly change the wine over time. Correct aging can improve a wine's aroma, color, complexity and flavor.

Tips for Choosing A Wine Cabinet

A wine cabinet is a great way to ensure the proper aging of wine and champagne. There are a multitude of different wine cabinet designs available, but the most important feature to consider when choosing a wine cabinet is that it is properly constructed to maintain the specific, stable conditions under which wine ages best.

A wine collection is a point of pride for the owner and represents a significant investment. The right wine cabinet will display and store your collection accordingly. Questions you may want to ask a professional sales associate or yourself before choosing a wine cabinet include:

  • What size and format bottles can a particular wine cabinet hold?
  • How easy is it to access the bottles?
  • Where am I going to place the cabinet, and will it need to fit through any doors, stairways, or narrow hallways?
  • How many bottles do I need to store?
  • Can the cooling unit in the cabinet be replaced in the future?
  • What is the average life of a particular wine cabinet?

A wine cabinet can be an attractive and practical way to store and age wine, allowing owners to both display their collections and age them properly for years of perfect enjoyment. When deciding on a wine storage system, make sure to plan ahead for future by looking forward over the next five years of growth and collecting. Remember that most enthusiasts collect more once they have invested in proper storage, so plan ahead for the growth of your collection. Most important in your consideration of your wine storage system is location. Location is the key to how happy you are with your system and how well it will function for you mechanically, environmentally, financially and aesthetically. Utilize a professional wine storage expert to help you decide the best storage solution to fit your needs.

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