How to store wine
The possibility of keeping a good number of bottles in store means you can follow the natural progress of a specific wine, as well as avoiding continual transport of the bottles from the shop home, which certainly doesn`t help to enjoy the wine at its best. If it isn`t possible to have a basement area where you can build a cellar then you should choose the room in the house where the temperature varies least from summer to winter. In fact, even though the recommended temperature for storing wine is 12°-14°, slightly higher but constant temperatures guarantee sufficient security.
If you have an old wardrobe you can insulate it using polystyrene and this will also mean that the bottles are not exposed to direct light, which can have a violent effect on the colour. The bottles should be stored horizontally so that the cork comes into contact with the wine and remains damp and springy. Vertical storage tends to dry out the cork and allows oxygen to get into the bottle, oxidising the contents.
If you have a room for the purpose you can arrange the bottles on shelves in wood or metal. A high level of humidity may cause the formation of mould on the cork or more simply the label may come off. To prevent this happening you can cover each bottle with transparent film. If the room is too dry you can use a humidifier. The cellar should be kept clean and should not be used to store other foodstuffs. No hams or salamis should be hung there and the storage of detergents or paints would be even less appropriate.
Learn how to drink wine
Of course, you"ll want to know how to drink it. As easy as this sounds, you really should equip yourself with the right tools. For red wine, you`ll want a glass with a large bowl and a relatively short stem. For white wine, you`ll want a glass with a smaller bowl but taller stem. The whole theory here is that white wine is served chilled and thus should be kept away from the heat of your hand. Red wine, on the other hand, does well to be served just a degree or two below room temperature, so that it will release its heady vapors when it is warmed by the body heat in your hand.
Also, you may want to open any bottles of older red wine a few minutes before you intend to drink them. Pour off about half a glass and then let it sit, to allow the wine to breathe. By pouring off a little wine, you give a much greater surface area to both the wine in the bottle and of course in the glass, which allows it to mix with oxygen and to dissipate any stale air that may have collected in the bottle. Conveniently, it also lets you pick out the pieces of cork you may have bored into the wine in any clumsy attempts to uncork the thing.
Once you`ve taken a sip, you`ve just taken your first steps on an incredibly long journey to truly mastering wine. This can be an expensive journey, but a worthwhile one if you hope ever to truly enjoy meals in future.