You might not think that you should cellar a white wine, but the truth is there’s not anything wrong necessarily with storing a white wine for a moderate aging period. While it’s true that the majority of whites aren’t going to reap huge rewards from being cellared, there are a number of more tannic white wines or full-bodied ones that can benefit from five years in the cellar – or even more.
Storing and aging white wine has almost the same types of needs as red wine does. Cool, dark and humid places are ideal – around 60 percent relative humidity is perfect – and there shouldn’t be much in the way of excess vibration. One important way that white wines differ from reds when it comes to storage is that whites are much more resilient to lower temperatures; anywhere between 45 and 50 degrees Fahrenheit is perfect. This means you can safely store white wines on lower racks or shelves. Even keeping them close to where an air conditioning unit blows cool air into the room is safe for white wines.
In fact, many white wines can be chilled even further once you pull it from the cellar. Oaked, fuller-bodied white wines are perfect for bringing right to the table, as they’re ideal to be served at about 50 degrees. Lighter-bodied, medium whites are ideally cooled another five degrees, while the sweetest, most fruity whites can go even lower.
Upon serving, you’ll notice there’s little in the way of sediment in whites; this means that it’s unlikely a white needs to be decanted. Additionally, you won’t need to let a white breathe as much as a red. Once you’re done, you should most definitely recork the bottle or use a bottle stopper – just the way you need to with a red. If you don’t have a bottle stopper or can’t recork it, don’t forget: you can use it for cooking, even if it’s no longer any good for drinking.
Now that you are ready to start cellaring white wine…shop for your collection here. You can get some of the best white wines around for under $20.