EuroCave Wine Cabinet (Photo: Rosehill Wine Cellars)
If you’ve been wondering whether you should get a wine refrigerator, below are some answers to help you figure it out. Most people who ask this question have recently begun collecting bottles of wine for future enjoyment with their meals. Simply placing wine on a decorative wine rack in your home could ultimately diminish the flavor, since undesirable chemical reactions occur in the wine from too much heat or exposure to UV rays. In the absence of a wine cellar, a wine refrigerator may be just what you need, but it depends.
Length of Storage
A wine fridge is excellent for storing wine for the short-term or medium-term. Long-term storage, on the other hand, may not be ideal for a free-standing wine refrigerator or an under-the-counter wine fridge. Quality wine that is stored for five years or more will do better with the unique conditions in a wine cellar. The temperature fluctuations in a wine cellar are typically minimized, as are vibrations and exposure to UV rays. EuroCave now offers wine cabinets that are made especially for long-term storage. They have significantly fewer vibrations than the nearest competitors.
Wine is a unique beverage that benefits from being stored in a very specific temperature range, that being between 55°F and 60°F. If wine is stored for very long, there should be at least 50% humidity, so that the corks don’t dry out, shrink, allow air inside the bottle, and spoil the wine because of oxidation. As mentioned above, other considerations include stability and protection from UV rays. If you have more than a few bottles of wine to drink, a wine fridge could be perfect for you.
Why a Standard Refrigerator Won’t Work
The atmosphere in a standard kitchen refrigerator is not favorable to wine storage. One problem is that refrigerators are designed to remove humidity from the cold air. Humidity is an essential element of proper wine storage. The temperature in a refrigerator average 40°, which is considerably colder than the ideal temp for wine. Another problem is that refrigerators don’t have wine racks.
Where to Buy a Wine Fridge
Is a wine fridge right for you? At Rosehill Wine Cellars, we offer a wide range of quality wine refrigerators. Among our selections are EuroCave Wine Cabinets that mimic a wine cellar better than any other wine cooler. You can find wine fridges of all sizes as well as under-the-counter and stand-alone wine coolers on the Rosehill Wine Cellars website. If you grow out of your wine fridge, Rosehill is also the place to call for a custom-built wine cellar.
Wine is best enjoyed when it is stored and served at certain temperatures. A wine cooling unit is made especially for the purpose of maintaining the correct conditions for wine storage. There is no way a standard air conditioning unit can provide the right environment for a wine room or wine cellar. The cooling unit is a foundational part of a wine cellar, though many other factors contribute to its effectiveness. There are three basic types of wine cellar cooling units, those being: Self-contained, ductless-split, and ducted-split air handler climate control systems. Is a self-contained cooling unit best for your wine cellar?
Air Conditioning Units Won’t Do
Whisperkool wall-mounted cooling unit
A self-contained through-the-wall wine cellar cooling unit resembles a window air conditioning unit, but they are not the same thing at all. An air conditioner provides cold blasts of air for short spans of time to create a certain temperature in the room. Spikes in temperature are common with basic air conditioning. Wine cooling units, on the other hand, run much more frequently. They keep a room at a much more constant, colder temperature. In addition, self-contained wine cellar cooling units regulate humidity.
When is a Self-Contained Wine Cooling Unit Best?
The most affordable wine cooling unit is the self-contained variety, and it is also the easiest to install. This type of cooling unit is best for use in wine rooms and wine cabinets that have adequate ventilation. These are one-piece, wall-mounted units that are vented through the wall. There are no drain lines for this type of cooling unit. Everything needed is built right in, other than the need to vent, since it contains exhaust. These units are quiet but do make a noticeable amount of noise, same as split systems.
A huge consideration when installing a self-contained wine cellar cooling unit is which wall is best for placement and exhaust. Oftentimes, these systems mount to an interior wall, exhausting hot air and creating fan noise in an adjacent room. The adjoining room must be well-ventilated, in order to contain the heat that the unit vents. The adjoining room should not exceed 80°F. It should also usually be no smaller than the wine storage space.
A down side to self-contained systems is that the manufacturer usually requires that they be uninstalled and shipped in for repair or service. A benefit of a self-contained wine cooling unit is that it allows for maximum racking space in the wine cellar, and it is virtually an invisible feature.
When creating an ideal wine environment in your home, it’s best to contact professionals, such as the experts at Rosehill Wine Cellars. At Rosehill, we only focus on wine cellar construction. We can ensure that all components of your wine cellar are appropriate for wine storage, including the wine cooling unit. With help from our experts, you will get the best advice on whether to install a self-contained wine cooling unit or another variety.
Accurately judging wine clarity, color, and viscosity requires a clear, smooth wine glass.
As covered in “From Wine Cooler to Wine Color,” looking at wine is one of the ways to fully experience it. Knowing the expected color based on the type of wine, measuring opacity, and describing the particular hue of a wine are steps in visual assessment previously covered. What remains in evaluating appearance involves clarity and viscosity.
Clarity is a function of how well light is transmitted or reflected through the body of liquid. There should be a sharp clarity to every wine, since absence of clarity means a presence of cloudiness, film, or muddiness, all of which are conditions which mean that the wine has spoiled.
If light passes through without a source of obstruction, the wine is extremely clear. It’s more challenging to see clarity in a red wine, as compared to a white wine. Either way, a back light is needed.
A good source of light is important for evaluating color and clarity. The sun is the best full-spectrum light source to use for assessing wine clarity, but standard incandescent light bulbs work well, too.
With sparkling wine or champagne, clarity is easy to assess because it has a bright glow. It is also easy to see right through white wine, which has a shiny quality.
The dark colors of red wine make clarity more difficult to evaluate. Tip the glass away from you against the white background. There should be a deep shine, as though light were being reflected from within.
The viscosity of wine is often described as a wine having “legs,” but this is arguably one of the areas of wine tasting that is most misconceived. The “legs” are the stripes a wine makes as the liquid slowly rolls down the side of your glass after you have swirled the wine. This is a basic misconception because several things contribute to a “wine’s legs.” What causes the liquid to move more slowly down the glass is a matter to be sorted out between seeing and tasting the wine.
In general, the wine’s legs is indicative of its viscosity. But take this description into context and it doesn’t entirely hold up. Honey, for instance, is highly viscous because of the high sugar content. In other words, sugar concentration is one of several traits that can determine the wine legs. Dessert wines tend to be more viscous because they are sweeter.
Alcohol content also affects viscosity. It gives wine more legs because alcohol is more viscous than water. Port and Madeira are both high in sugar and alcohol, which is why they have legs more profound than other wines.
The concentration of compounds dissolved into wine also influences viscosity. Dark, heavily extracted red wines with big taste have more legs than lighter wines.
What are you looking for in a wine?
Between part one, “From Wine Cooler to Wine Color,” and this information about clarity and viscosity, you now have everything you need to make an assessment about wine according to its appearance. There are many more elements to taking full tasting notes, but it’s good to know how to begin with the eyes.
Whatever the size of your wine storage, CellarPro has a reliable cooling unit to fit your needs.
At Rosehill Wine Cellars, we can’t help but appreciate CellarPro and other top manufacturers for providing reliable products for optimal wine storage. There are technical reasons to appreciate something as seemingly unromantic as a cooling unit. We actually find it rather exciting that our clients, all of whom are wine lovers, can be sure that their CellarPro cooling unit will protect their investments. The standard 5-year warranty offered by CellarPro is the industry’s most thorough, protecting against any potential defects in manufacturing.
CellarPro Model 1800QT
A wine cooling unit is available to fit any needs. The CellarPro 18090QT is ideal, for example, when installed through the wall in indoor residential wine cellars of up to 200 cubic feet. This cooling unit is vibration-free and ultra-quiet. Every CellarPro cooling unit is equipped with an electronic thermostat and a digital LED display, which allows you to set the precise temperature you desire for your wine cabinet. An adjustable humidity control is included, making it easy to maintain optimal humidity of up to 70%. No need to worry about ice build-up, since there is an automatic defrost. A quick-chill mode is included on the digital controls, in addition to a convenient energy saver. The unit includes an indicator that lets you know when maintenance is needed. Visual and audible alarms help to ensure that your wine collection is safe. Options and modifications include:
- The vent exhaust on your wine cooling unit can be configured for top or rear.
- The 16-gauge grounded power cord is 8 feet long and can be routed to exit to the left side of the cooling unit, which is perfect when the power outlet is inside the cellar.
- There are no coils to clean with this wine cooling unit. Anytime the filter becomes dirty, pull out the frame and replace the filter with a clean one. The fiber orientation and graduated density of the filter capture particles and dust more efficiently than other synthetic filters.
CellarPro 8200 series Cooling Units
CellarPro also offers wine cooling units suitable for large wine cellars. The CellarPro 8200VSx Cooling Unit, for example, can provide optimal wine storage temperatures for residential and commercial wine cellars of up to 2,200 cubic feet. Conditions outside can get up 115°F, and this unit has proven in performance testing to maintain optimal humidity and temperature conditions more effectively than similar units from other manufacturers. This product has all features needed to protect the investment of any wine collector.
At Rosehill Wine Cellars, we custom build wine cellars and wine cabinets. We rely on manufacturers such as CellarPro to ensure proper temperature and humidity, and we appreciate their reliability.
Store your wine in a wine fridge and enjoy 2 glasses per day.
Wine is a beverage packed with life-enhancing benefits, which is just one reason we take great pride in all of our products and services at Rosehill Wine Cellars. Wine enthusiasts are those fortunate enough to have discovered the singular pleasure of drinking a glass of wine. Just as there is depth to the aroma of a fine wine, there are depths to be explored as a wine connoisseur. If you’ve been looking for a new spark in life, why not make a commitment to learn more about wine and drink it more often? Be prepared to invest in a wine fridge, since proper storage of wine is essential. The following are a few of many reasons to make wine-drinking your new resolution.
Connect with the earth
The geology associated with growing grapes is an intrinsic aspect of wine. “Terroir” is a term that refers to the overall natural environment in which wine is produced. Climate, sunlight, topography, and soil all impart characteristic taste and aroma to a particular wine; and correct storage temperatures preserve those flavors. Enjoying a bottle of wine is to appreciate the region in which the grapes flourished. Many wine connoisseurs visit the vineyards where their favorite wines are produced, which makes the connection to the earth even more meaningful.
Aroma is everything
Some say love enters the heart by way of the nose. Scents can spark romance, evoke powerful memories, and enhance the enjoyment of wine. Aromas are connected directly to the portion of our brain that triggers emotion, humor, and memory. Trained noses can actually detect a wine’s region, assemblage, and age through the smell. Because wine and aroma are inseparable, you will fill your life with the potential for deeper emotion and a larger volume of pleasant memories as a wine enthusiast.
2 glasses per day, no more, have health benefits
You can enjoy significant health benefits from drinking one to two glasses of wine each day. For this type of commitment, a wine fridge may not suffice. Contact us a Rosehill Wine Cellars for a custom wine cellar, which you may need to fully realize the daily benefits of wine. There are antioxidants in red wine tannins. Drinking wine can reduce instances of strokes, heart attacks, and gallstones. Don’t forget, however, that more than two glasses of wine per day means that every health benefit is lost, replaced by the effects of excess caloric and alcohol intake. A glass of wine with lunch and another with dinner is how it’s done in Europe and South America; take a page from their book.
The potential excitement around being a wine connoisseur can include traveling the world through familiarity with the wines you drink. Contact us at Rosehill Wine Cellars for an under-the-cabinet wine fridge or a custom wine cellar, and make wine-drinking a new priority.