Basics of Wine Storage

Man Checks His Wine Storage

You don’t need a castle with a vast cellar to benefit from some basic wine storage knowledge. Anyone with a nice bottle of wine can benefit from learning how to store wine. This beginner’s guide to wine storage from Columbia Distributing provides some tips and tricks for getting the most out of your wine through proper storage.


Much like people, wines are particular about the temperature of their environment. Fortunately, you do not need a fancy basement cellar to store your budding wine collection. Of course, a cellar is an ideal environment for wines that are crafted to age, but not every home is equipped with a designated cellar space, and that’s more than okay! All you need is a room or space with relatively dark, dry, and cool conditions.

Aim for a place in your home with low light where the temperature stays steadily between 45 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit, with a humidity level between 50 and 80 percent. If the temperature gets any higher than 70 degrees your wine might begin to cook. If the humidity levels aren’t right, the cork could dry out, or you could have mold problems. Most people with a small collection opt to get a small wine cooler, or if you have a basement with the right conditions, you could set up a storage closet. Just be sure to check the room conditions frequently.


Wine in corked bottles does best on its side so that the wine touches the cork, which keeps it from drying out. If a cork dries out, the wine might oxidize and you’ll be in for disappointment when you go to uncork it later. Wine in screw-top bottles or wine with plastic corks can be placed upright. Wine storage racks can be found in a number of locations and online shops, so it’s easy to customize your setup, wherever you choose to store your wine.

Selecting the Right Wine to Store

It’s important to remember that not every wine is meant to be stored and aged. Some wines are produced to be enjoyed in the moment, and you’ll want to keep those wines close to the dining room so they can be opened whenever the mood strikes. If you do plan on storing wine for years, or if you are beginning a collection of expensive wines, you’ll want to take a look at professional wine storage systems. You don’t want to experience the disappointment of uncorking an expensive bottle of wine only to find that it cooked or got moldy in imperfect conditions. You’ll want to do your research to protect your wines against the elements of your home.

Make it Uniquely Yours

There are a few basic tenants of proper wine storage that we have outlined here, but it’s also good to remember that your wine collection is uniquely yours, and your storage system should reflect that. How you choose to store your wine is completely up to you. You can organize it by label, type, or date. You can store it in store-bought cabinetry, or make your own. Whether you have 3 bottles or 300, almost everyone can set up a proper wine storage system to keep their beloved collection.

Let Us Help You Get Started

Columbia Distributing has an ever-expanding portfolio of wines, and we would love to help you grow your personal collection, or help you stock up for your next catering event. Contact us today to learn about our expansive wine portfolio.