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High summer temperatures make proper storage of wine important

High summer temperatures make proper storage of wine important

Wine , Wine Tasting , Winery 🕔July 28, 2016

It’s hot out there. Northern California summers can reach 100 degrees on a regular basis, and that presents a danger not only to your skin without sunscreen, but also wine.

Leaving wine in direct heat for an extended amount of time can alter its balance and, and as a result, its taste. Some wines that get too hot can seep out of the cork, which is referred to “cooked” wine.

Cooked wine won’t taste all that great, unless, of course, it is actually cooked into a nice dish for dinner.

The affect high temperatures have on bottled wine has been studied. A study in 2014 showed that “a relatively small difference in the temperature speeds up several chemical reactions associated with wine aging and even promotes new reactions that are not observed at lower temperatures.” To come to this conclusion, researchers put 400 bottles of Sangiovese wine either in a professional wine cellar with strictly a controlled temperature or in an area similar to a dark room in a home.

The researchers found that after six months, the house-stored wine was “aging approximately four times faster.”

Another study found that “High temperatures are known to increase acid hydrolysis of certain fruity esters, as well as the hydrolysis of 3-mercaptohexanonacetate, which is responsible for the passion fruit and guava aromas in Sauvignon and Chenin blanc wines.”

Some wines will simply do better than others in heat. Older wines are much more susceptible to heat in particular because it can speed up the aging process. The type of bottle also will be a variable in how much heat affects wine.

Many suggest the ideal temperature to store wine is around 55 degrees, with 77 degrees and above often cited as the high that you should stay away from. So you can only imagine what a hot car in the summer can do. If you plan to transport a bottle of wine in the summer, consider purchasing a cooler for your wine if you want it to keep its proper flavor while it is in the trunk. The trunk of a car can be like an oven!

We keep our tasting room at just the right temperature for our wines. The tasting room is an old restored milk house originally built in 1950. Come by and check it out, and make sure you have proper storage ready if you take any wines home!

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