With the party season almost here and festive booze deals cramming the supermarket shelves, many of us are stocking up on “party pop” to enjoy in the run up to welcoming Christmas guests into our homes and seeing in the New Year.
A wine cabinet is the more cost-effective and achievable alternative to a wine cellar, to protect your wine’s quality and flavour. We asked our appliance partner, Caple, for the low down on wine cabinets ahead of the party season.
Caple’s wine cabinet expert Danny Lay shared with us the importance of correctly storing wine.
“Recent evidence* now suggests that even moderate temperature fluctuations in the kitchen will result in anti-oxidant deterioration, which will damage wine's quality and impair the flavour with dramatic differences in the ageing of wine depending on where the bottles are stored. Wine cabinets will store wine in optimum conditions, include compressorcooling systems, which maintain precisely the right temperature regardless of the ambient room temperature.
“Models with anti-vibration gaskets and low-vibration compressors have become more sought-after because these help to prevent disturbance to the wine’s sediment balance, which will affect the flavour. UV-protected glass on cabinet door fronts and inside LED lighting are also vital to prevent the wine from maturing early, so you can expect to have total control of your appliance's temperature.”
So how do you find the right wine cabinet for you? Here’s wine cabinet buying advice from Caple:
- Look for cabinets with compressor cooling systems as they will maintain precisely the right temperature regardless of the ambient room temperature and so retain all your wine’s complex flavour (wine is sensitive and will react badly to fluctuating temperatures).
- If you enjoy open-plan living, pick a cabinet with a low sound level.
- UV-protected glass on cabinet door fronts and inside LED lighting are useful, as both prevent the wine from maturing early.
- Anti-vibration gaskets and low-vibration compressors are important features to look for because they help to prevent disturbance to the wine’s sediment balance, which will affect the flavour.
- Make sure your cabinet offers constant humidity levels above 65% - this way, cork quality is preserved and mould and odours are prevented.
- If the ullage (the space between the cork and the wine) starts at the upper shoulder of your wine, your wine will keep best if it’s laid on its side. This will also keep the cork moist for a tight air seal to keep in the heady flavours.
- Buy a cabinet with ample shelving, for bottles to be stored either on a single level so they are easy to remove or stacked for longer storage.
- Ask for frosted glass shelf packs, which will enable you to store other drinks such as beer, soft drinks or pre-mixed cans at 3C.
- Choose a cabinet, which will work well with your other appliances in your kitchen such as stainless steel or black glass models.
Appliances are the workhorses of the kitchen they cook the food, make the coffee, wash the dishes and keep food fresh and safe. An efficient kitchen has a place for everything and everything in its place and goes for wine too. What couldn’t be nicer than having a wine cabinet to keep every hostess’ glass of wine just right?
Is a wine cabinet on your must have list for the festive season or within your dream kitchen? Share your thoughts with us over on Facebook and Twitter.
* Edmund Mach Foundation in Trentino, Italy held a study where findings were presented at a recent wine symposium held by the American Chemical Society in San Francisco in August 2014.