Pros and Cons of Storing Wine in Wine Cabinets

Wine Cabinet

03 Jul Pros and Cons of Storing Wine in Wine Cabinets

Wines need very careful handling, they thrive in a damp, cool and dark environment and any variation in temperature, and humidity or even light can adversely affect the quality of wines and ruin their delicate, complex flavours. For this reason, it is essential to store wines in the proper environment.

When it comes to wine storage, there are many options available and there’s something out there for every budget. The most affordable options are wine coolers or refrigerators. The most expensive options are to construct a wine cellar with appropriate climate control options. Somewhere in the middle price range are wine cabinets.

There are varied descriptions of wine cabinets, some liken it to the wine refrigerators, and some consider them to be the best alternative to the traditional wine cellars. One must bear in mind that there’s a wide range of products available. Some wine cabinets are just a slight step up from wine coolers or fridges. Some are sophisticated pieces of machinery designed specifically to create optimal wine storage environments. Unsurprisingly, the price and the performance vary accordingly.

The Pros

There are many advantages to storing wine in wine cabinets, especially for novice wine connoisseurs looking for good storage solutions when they’re just starting out.

#1 Economical

Wine cabinets are a more economical option in comparison to wine cellars. The prices of such storage units can be between AU$1000 to $6000, depending on the quality of the appliance. Considering that fact that a wine cellar can cost upwards of $6000 to build, many go for the more affordable option.

#2 Space

Not everyone has the space in their home to construct a wine cellar, certainly not those who live in city apartments. One of the main advantages of the wine cabinet is that it can fit into a person’s home and one doesn’t need to set out a separate room for it. Moreover, manufactures have come up with different designs for these cabinets so they can look like they’re a part of the decor of the house.

#3 Temperature and Humidity

The wine cabinets not only maintain optimal temperature for the wines, but also maintain good levels of humidity, ensuring that the environment inside the cabinet is damp enough that the corks don’t dry up and shrink, exposing the wines to air. This allows for long term storage for wines.

The Cons

As great as wine cabinets are, there are some disadvantages that come along with them.

#1 Capacity

Many wine collectors, who are just starting out, underestimate just how fast their collection starts to grow and just how expansive it can get. Eventually, most realize that they’re lacking the space to store that wine. Moreover, these cabinets are designed to store Bordeaux-style bottles that one must fit into the cabinet like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle.

Oddly-shaped bottles would just take up more space. Piling wine bottles on top of one another can also lead to a difficulty is accessing them. One can’t read the labels and would need to move bottles around to find the right one.

#2 Temperature differentials

One concern that might directly affect the quality of the wine is the fact that the temperature in different parts of the cabinet can be different as well. For example, the temperature at the bottom of the cabinet can be cooler than the top.

In cabinets that aren’t well designed, the constant switching on and off of the compressor can damage the wines. Wines can withstand temperature alterations that can happen slowly over a period of time to some extent, but constant fluctuations aren’t good for them.

#3 Vibrations and Noise

As of now, no one knows if subtle vibrations from a compressor can actually damage the wines but most generally assume it could. This is a problem if one intends to store fine wines and age them properly.

Another factor, though this has less to do with the wines and more with the person storing them, is the noise. Some wine cabinets can be noisy and disrupt a person who’s sensitive to noise.

For more information on different kinds of wine cellars available, you can call Signature Cellars on 02 9340 7515 or use this contact form to get in touch with us. We’ll be pleased to assist you.

Thanks for reading,
Neil Smallman
Signature Cellars
02 9340 7515

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