Temperature fluctuations are damaging to fine wines. All red, white and sparkling wines need to be stored at a constant temperature of between 10ºC and 14ºC if they are to mature properly. If the ambient temperature of the place the wine is stored in changes, the liquid will 'dilate' and 'contract', tiring the wine and damaging its organic vitality. As a result, its quality will drop sharply.
If the wines are stored in an environment where the temperature is above 14º, the maturing process will be accelerated. In contrast, wines stored below 10º will not mature fast enough.
The most basic wine fridges simple cool the bottles inside. These are unable to maintain a constant temperature when the outside ambient temperature falls below a given level and so are unsuitable for long-term storage.
More advanced wine storage cabinets allow the owner to select a temperature which is maintained throughout the whole fridge to best allow the wine inside to mature. These sorts of units are best suited to the long-term storage of wine.
In contrast, other wine cabinets feature different temperature zones which allow the owner to keep a variety of red, white and sparkling wines at the perfect temperatures for drinking. These sorts of units are best suited for consumers who want to be able to serve their wine to guests in its optimum condition.
Some models combine both wine storage and wine service, boasting one area that is at a constant temperate for the maturing process and other zones that can be used to chill whites and sparking wines for serving and even warm reds before consumption.
It is vital that the serious wine lover is able to control the humidity of the environment where they keep their precious bottles. The correct humidity maintains the elasticity and seal of corks and prevents air seeping into bottles, which can oxidise and spoil the liquid within.
The ideal humidity to keep wines is above 50 per cent and the best wine cabinets use innovative technology to ensure the corks remain in the best possible condition.
Units feature innovative systems that actively manage humidity within the cabinet. These systems maintain a constant level of humidity throughout the whole space which can be controlled by the user. Items like clay pellets are used to regulate the humidity.
It is also important the bottles in the cabinets are stored on their sides to ensure the liquid remains in contact with the cork and keeps it moist. For this reason, most of the wine storage units on offer feature wooden shelves that have been designed to safely store bottles. Many optimise space by allowing the user to store bottles in opposite directions.
Dedicated wine storage units boast impressive insulation to both keep the internal temperature constant regardless of external fluctuations and to limit the amount of electricity that the appliance uses.
Many of the wine storage units stocked at Wine-Storage.co.uk feature state-of-the-art insulation technology to ensure that the bottles inside remain as protected as possible.
What's more, it is important to remember that the brown or green glass of the wine bottle will not protect the liquid inside from the harmful effects of direct light.
As a result, many of the models that are stocked at Wine-Storage.co.uk feature clear glass front panels so that the owner can proudly display their collection. To combat the problem, many models employ specially tinted glass that blocks harm UV rays. Some even make use of advanced LED internal lighting that gives off the minimum of heat so as to protect the wines while they are on display.
When maturing wine, it is important that the air quality in the storage unit is of the highest quality. By filtering and constantly replacing the air inside wine storage units, the owner can prevent mould growing and damaging the liquid and also remove unpleasant smells that can taint the wine.
The fact that unwelcome odours can damage wine makes kitchens, pantries, garages and laundry rooms unsuitable for long-term storage. Many of the units sold at Wine-Storage.co.uk boast charcoal filters that actively purify the income fresh air to eliminate potentially damaging smells. These filters can be replaced to make sure the filtration continue to function effectively.
To maintain the air quality within the wine storage unit, it is also important to have a flow of fresh air. Many models use a two-hole system to gently ventilate the unit with filtered air. This recreates the environment in the best traditional cellars
Vibrations can disrupt the slow development of wines when they are being stored. Similarly, movement can encourage the diffusion of oxygen within bottles that are ready for drinking, risking wine oxidisation.
Vibrations from things such as underground trains, lorries and lifts can all impact wines, potentially accelerating the aging process or even spoiling the wine.
Wine storage units sold by Wine-Storage.co.uk make use of compressors and other state-of-the-art materials to lessen vibrations and protect the bottles from harmful movement.
Whats more, many of the appliances on sale boast innovative rubber shock absorbers on each bottle shelf to eliminate any residual vibration.
As many wine storage units will end up installed in a prominent place in a kitchen, it is also important that the appliances themselves are not too noisy. Machines are available that have been specially designed to function quietly - in most cases they are no louder that the average fridge.
As well as employing state-of-the-art technology, it is vital that your wine is stored in an effective, intuitive and safe way. The units available from Wine-Storage.co.uk are all designed to best store bottles.
Many models employ shelves made from wood that are resistant to the damp and humidity. They are specially designed to maximise storage capacity, with many allowing the owner to arrange bottles in opposite directions. Pull-out shelves are also sometimes used to make access easier.
In some wine storage units, half-folding and inclined shelves are employed to make it easier to present wines before they are served. Some models also have options for the storage of opened bottles.
Many units offer the owner the chance to affix labels to shelves to make it easier to keep track of the specific vintages stored in different areas.
Most manufacturers make wine storage units in a variety of sizes that mirror the different sizes of peoples cellars. Buyers typically have three options: small (with space for up to around 100 bottles), medium (with space for around 180 bottles) and large (as many as 250 bottles).