When dreaming up luxury renovations in the home, swimming pools and hot tubs, walk in wardrobes, gyms and cinema rooms are surely up there on most people’s wish lists, but the oenophiles among us will most certainly be envisioning a luxurious wine cellar in their abode.
Designed to house their precious bottles of wine, cellars are the ideal place for storing as many bottles as you can fit, but don’t be fooled into thinking a dark cellar is all you need to keep your wine at optimum condition, as there are many factors that you will need to consider before beginning a renovation of this kind.
From prepping the area and finding the right wine cellar cooling unit for your space to choosing the right racking and planning your stylish décor to finish it off with flair, the list is long, but the most important aspect of all? Making sure your wine is well looked after. This is one of those renovations where substance reigns over style, though that isn’t to say style should be entirely overlooked, especially if you have the space and wish to include a tasting area in there for yourself and visitors.
We take a look at how you can create the perfect wine cellar in your home and how your bottles can best be looked after to ensure none of the luscious liquid inside spoils. After all, you will either be wishing to enjoy a taste of the tipple or seeking a return on an investment of exclusive bottles at some point; this is a room that isn’t just for show, but one that takes care of your treasured items, too. In addition to this, a wine cellar in your home is sure to add value to your property, so if you see another house move in your future then this could be just what you need to increase desire in potential buyers when the time comes to sell.
How to properly store wine
Curating your very own personal wine collection can be a very exciting hobby and integrating a cellar or wine room into your living space only serves to add to this joy. Make sure you learn how to properly store wine before you start any renovations so that you are well prepared and don’t miss any important aspects in the planning and design stages.
Wine doesn’t just need to be stored in a cool place, but one where the temperature does not fluctuate, and sunlight, humidity and vibrations don’t disrupt it – the liquid needs to settle and rest as it matures and grows in quality and value.
Generally speaking, wine is best stored at around 13ºC, but this can vary from wine to wine and more information can be sought from the manufacturer. For bottles with corks, they should be stored on their sides so as to keep the cork moist to avoid it drying out and shrinking, which can result in seepages and premature ageing. Keep bottles out of direct sunlight, as dark as possible, and ensure the humidity sits around 60 to 68 percent.
How to achieve the perfect temperature in your wine cellar
The correct temperature is undoubtedly the most vital part of the whole wine storing process, so how do you ensure that the room stays at that perfect temperature all year long? Through the use of a wine cooling unit. Installing a wine cooling unit in your cellar or wine room will be the most influential part of the whole renovation as it is likely to be a well-used space and therefore will need to be temperature controlled. They work by quietly cooling the air and removing excess moisture but not removing the essential moisture the corks need, as well as maintaining a good level of humidity in the room.
You will be looking for a unit that works appropriately for the amount you space you have, so measure up your cellar in cubic feet and ensure you buy the unit that works best. Larger wine cellars will need a unit that produces more power to handle the increased load, so opting for a high-quality item will be paramount. They will be larger and, more likely, noisier so should be placed away from the cellar and will keep the room temperate via a ducted system. Larger wine cooling units work best for larger cellars, those used often and those designed with a lot of glass.
A stylish space to sip wine
Now that you have the essential elements of wine storing sorted, you can look to create a welcoming room to sit and sip wines with friends. If you have the space in your home, the larger the wine room the better, in our opinion, as this means that you will be able to display your bottles in the best way while also making space for a decorative barrel or two along with a bar table for tastings and entertaining.
Bare stone walls give that rustic wine cellar look, while copious amounts of racking will ensure you have enough space for all the wine you wish to store now and buy in the future. Make sure you have some space to showcase your favourite bottles and include shelving if you wish to store some wines in presentation boxes. Remember to keep the lighting low and make good use of signage and labels to direct you straight to your favourite tipples when you need to reach for a bottle quickly.
The bottom line
Creating a dedicated wine room or cellar in your home is a dream for many, just make sure you have enough space and the correct equipment to care for your wines and you will surely have an enviable addition to your home that you will, no doubt find hard to leave.
LLM August 2021