Everyone knows that you need to keep wine safely stored. A nice wine cabinet is a minimum requirement, but there’s more to wine preservation than just that. In fact, there’s much more that you’ll need to learn if you want to not just maintain the value of your wines but to improve them as well.
There are three very important factors when it comes to wine preservation: humidity, temperature and light. A corked wine needs to be kept in an environment with a moderately high relative humidity to keep them from drying out, and variations in temperature can lead to the taste of a particular wine changing – or even becoming spoiled – thanks to the chemical reactions these temperatures can cause. Finally, exposure to light can cause unwanted interactions with the phenolic compounds within wine leading to less than welcome changes as well.
It’s always tempting to savor an opened bottle of wine by taking your time to finish it. Having a glass or two at dinner will leave plenty left over for another day, but the problem is that once you remove a bottle of wine from its place of storage and uncork it, the bottle isn’t long for this world; any wine exposed to open air will begin to slowly but surely oxidize from exposure to air.
However, there are ways to continue your wine preservation efforts even after the cork comes out. There are wine preserver systems, devices that can be fitted to the open top of a bottle that re-seal it to keep air out to prevent the wine within from oxidizing. Many of these advanced systems will even displace the air trapped within the bottle with other gases like argon or nitrogen in order to preserve even more of that freshness. It’s an invaluable tool for many high-end restaurants, and single-bottle systems work better than re-corking or stoppering an opened bottle at home.