Show Off Your Wine Collection With Custom Wine Racks!
Welcome to Wine Rack HQ! We truly are the headquarters of everything wine rack related. We know how passionate you are about your collection, and we want to make sure you have the perfect way to display it. That’s why we are offering this vast selection of beautiful, high-quality wine racks at an unbeatable low price. Perhaps you are just starting out with your collection, and need a beautiful way to display your wine bottles in a smaller space. Or, perhaps you have been building your collection for years and need to outfit your wine cellar. Whatever you are seeking to accomplish, we have exactly what you need, at a price you’ll love.
Whether you’re in love with the classic feel of wooden wine racks, or you are more into the modern look, we have both wooden and metal wine racks to choose from. And, of course, you can’t drink wine without a glass. Show off your glasses with one of our wine glass racks! We also have a wide selection of custom tasting centers for your next soirée. From hanging wine racks to wall mounted wine racks, from small to large, we have the perfect wine cabinet for every sized room and every wine enthusiast.
We know that every collection is unique, so we make sure that we not only carry the best quality wine racks, but also the most varied in design. Our wine racks are built custom to your taste, so you can have one that is a perfect reflection of your personality. We are excited to be able to bring this great selection to you at our guaranteed low price. We want to make your shopping experience as stress-free as possible, so we have an expert customer service team standing by to answer all of your questions. You can reach us via email, over the phone, or on live chat! Browse our selection to start building your dream wine rack today.
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Winemaker Series – Individual Diamond BinSale!
Mini Stack Series – 12 Bottle Individual Wine Rack Dark WalnutSale!
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Winemaker Series – Individual Tasting Center With Case StorageSale!
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Redwood Wine Bottle GridSale!
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Redwood Wine Bottle Grid – 44 BottlesSale!
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Mini Stack Series – 12 Bottle Individual Wine Rack Mahogany StainSale!
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Cultivating a Rich Wine Collection
There’s no better way to enhance your wine tasting experience than to have an eye on collecting. Wine collection is a process that is centered on your personal preferences, and while part of collecting is showing off your goods, the only person you should be focused on impressing is yourself. It’s tempting to develop a collection on the basis of different wines’ potential to increase in fiscal value, but if you don’t focus on the quality of the wine, there’s no way it will end up paying off in the future.
Table of Contents
Do Your Research
Remember that several wines are meant to be drank immediately, so always research bottles you intend on incorporating into your collection. Wine aficionados recommend saving those bottles rich in tannins, the building blocks of wine taste. In short, tannins produce wine’s dry taste, and come from grapes and wood–particularly, the oak that comprises aging barrels. Wines high in tannin content include Cabernet Sauvignon, Montepulciano, Nebbiolo, Petite Sirah, Petit Verdot, and Tempranillo.
Tannins help wine age well, so you should shy away from wines that don’t contain rich tannins, like barbera, grenache, merlot, pinot noir, primitivo, and zinfandel. That doesn’t mean you should avoid drinking such low tannin wines–they just taste better right off the rack. In collecting, you’re looking for longevity. Not every wine that tastes good now will taste good in five years, much less fifteen years.
Collecting wine blends the organic experience of tasting with just a little bit of strategy. Create a budget for yourself to compel you to consistently be growing your collection while avoiding overspending. This isn’t a race, and if you’re not choosy about which wines you keep, you’ll end up with a wine rack full of mediocre bottles. Always taste before you save! That means you’ll be buying two bottles for every bottle you collect. (Later we’ll talk about the importance of documenting your personal tasting notes.)
Starter Pack Ideas for Wine Collection
A good rule of thumb for building a collection is to select wines with character. Here is a good starter pack, full of wines generally accepted as ideal for storing. First we have Rioja, which is produced from grapes found in Spain’s wine regions. There are different varieties of Rioja, all claiming respective regions within Spain. We recommend that you order a few bottles, if not simply for the tasting experience of the old world.
While most wines up for the task of sleeping in their wine racks for more than five years are red, the German Riesling is one of the sparing white wines that will keep and get better with time, even past a hundred years. You’ll want to lean toward a dryer variety of Riesling, which indeed exists despite the typically sweet ingredients of apricots, peaches, and pears. Research your bottles before you buy them, and perhaps you can throw in a Riesling that won’t necessarily age well so you can contrast their tones and aromas.
Bordeaux wines are traditionally produced in France, and there are two basic varieties: left bank Bordeaux, which is grown and concocted on the left bank of the famous Gironde River, and right bank Bordeaux, which comprises vineyards on the right bank. Typically, left bank Bordeaux is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, with an emphasis on the Cab, lending itself to a blend high in tannins. Right bank Bordeaux contains more Merlot than Cabernet Sauvignon, and is therefore somewhat of a lighter, less rich wine. Therefore, aim for left bank Bordeaux to collect wines that will last and deepen with time.
And finally, top your wine collection off with an American wine: the California Chardonnay. This is another white wine that makes it onto the list of commonly sought after whites for collection. In general, Chardonnay aged in barrels that aren’t often stirred to keep the liquid creamy. Chardonnays have been a hot topic for wine connoisseurs in the last couple of decades, with wine critics claiming it has wrongfully taken over the industry, overshadowing classics due to its grapes ability to grow in pretty much any region. But if you find a higher-end Chardonnay that doesn’t feel too fruity, it’s worth keeping in your cellar. Even if you don’t end up appreciating how it ages, you can at least claim an informed position on the debate.
So now you have a brief background on a handful of wines traditionally accepted as aging-worthy. Now what? We put together the following as a guide for starting, storing, and maintaining a wine collection. We hope it inspires you to get involved in the wine conversation and that you feel confident about moving forward in this process.
Getting Serious About Wine Collecting
While the starter pack above is a tried and true standard for starting to collect, you may have a more organic experience if you collect what you already know. If you’re serious enough about wine to want to collect it, you already have a few favorites, and they should definitely find themselves tucked away in your collection from the beginning. Remember to lean towards wines rich in tannins, but there’s no harm in collecting something that isn’t the golden standard for saving and aging. Perhaps you have friends with wine collections. Go visit their collections and gain some wisdom, asking questions about why they saved certain wines, how they expect certain wines to taste years down the road, and what they recommend you collect. Find out what their collecting strategy is and inquire about tips they have for you as a peer.
Even if you don’t already have connections to the wine community in your area, you should definitely embark on a mini local winery tour. Part of the charm of wine culture is a bottle of wine’s ability to tell the story of a certain landscape, of a particular climate, and of a time in history. If you ignore your local story, why are you even collecting wine? Wineries are the source of the drink, and you should do everything you can to engage with local wineries, which will be sure to host wine tastings and provide a platform for congregating around the topic of wine. This is a great way to hone your tastebuds and develop your taste. You also get to access the source of your wine, and you therefore have a great opportunity to become educated on the processes by which your wine was created and what the vintners intended on its aging to look like. Unless you’re already an experienced taster, make this process a social one! Invite friends or people you feel comfortable letting your guard down around and getting familiar with the language of wine tasting and collecting. Learning to drink wine involves learning to talk about it, so don’t be a loner as you work your way through your region’s wineries.
Another way to establish a community of fellow wine drinkers and collectors is to connect with local wine groups and winery clubs. Ask about opportunities to network with wine lovers whenever you visit a winery or even a restaurant that specializes in high-end wines. Wine drinkers are generally pretty eager to welcome newcomers into their circles, and this is an organized way to secure access to your local wine community.
Storing Your Wine
You can identify and collect all the best wine in the world, but if you don’t know how to store it, you may compromise the quality of these wines. DO NOT ruin a perfect bottle of imported Bordeaux or a bottle of Chardonnay with sentimental value by treating it amateurly. First and foremost, hide your wine away in the dark, out of direct sunlight and too much artificial light. A closet that rarely gets opened will do, or of course if you have a basement, that’s the stereotypical location for a strong collection. This doesn’t mean you have to keep all your wine hidden and out of sight from anyone–you can always feature a few of them that you intend on drinking out in your kitchen or dining area. But the ones that you want to keep for more than a few months should not be exposed to light. UV rays can penetrate even the thickest of bottles and meddle with the ingredients that age wine and keep it tasting robust.
Attend to the temperature of whatever room you keep your wine in with utmost care and attention. Your stored wine should never be exposed to temperatures over 70 to 75 degrees, as heat compels wine to oxidize, which on a chemical level will negatively affect the taste and molecular makeup of the wine. Ideally, your wine should rest in the 50 to 65 degree range, with 55 degrees most commonly stated to be the perfect storing temperature. The pickiest of wine collectors will tell you that an aging wine should never experience a degree change of 3 degrees in one day. Fluctuation in temperature will result in the liquid reacting to heat and cold in ways that frustrate the slow, steady sophistication at work inside the bottle. You’ll also want to keep your collection at a humidity of 70%, which strikes a perfect balance of keeping the cork from drying out or, at higher levels of humidity, molding.
Another fundamental key to aging wine with respect and care is to keep the bottles tipped on their side. Any wine rack you search for will accommodate for this–nobody in this industry is keen on compelling consumers to improperly position their wine bottles as they rest. Even tabletop wine racks, which are used to display wine intended to be drank sooner rather than later, are turned sideways to preserve the qualities of the wine bottle that keep the contents in ideal condition. On its side, the wine will keep the cork from drying out, and therefore combat outside air’s ability to penetrate. Once the wine is thusly positioned, avoid lifting the bottle or pulling it out from its storage rack. Shaking the bottle and its contents promotes unwanted chemical reactions and disturbs sediments that should be compacted as the wine ages.
Being familiar with all the practical, aforementioned advice for preserving your wine will prepare you to make the more aesthetic choices about storing. Metal wine racks deliver a more minimalist, streamlined look, and strike a more contemporary appearance than wooden ones. Wooden wine racks offer up a more traditional look, but that’s not to say there’s no such thing as a contemporary wooden wine rack. Metal wine racks typically allow you to fit more bottles into less space, which is perfect for someone who doesn’t yet have an entire cellar to devote to their collection. Similarly, a wall mounted wine rack is more space-saving than a free-standing one, but a free-standing rack is a great way to display wines you’ll be drinking within the week. (We do not recommend you leaving your collection out where it could be exposed to sunlight! Wait until you’re ready to imbibe before placing it in a table top wine rack.) But no matter which type of wine rack you use, remember that once you insert a bottle into its designated slot, you won’t want to disturb it.
Documenting Your Growing Wine Collection
Early on in your wine collecting, you’ll probably feel like you know everything about what you have. The memories of where you bought your wine and why will be fresh in your memory, and you’ll feel intimately connected to each bottle. This intimacy, however strong, will not last unless you adopt an informed strategy for documenting your wine. Bottles that end up being worth a lot of money have rich records about their histories, and tasting wines years down the road will be far more rewarding if you have notes on its past. Following these tips for wine documentation will help you stay organized and emotionally connected to the tastes and historical features of your collection.
- Select a documentation method. You can store data about your wine in a physical log, like a leather-bound binder or a file cabinet. Pros of logging information in a physical book or collection of physical materials is obviously more traditional, so if you find the more rustic route to be appealing, purchase something that will allow for growth. If you keep records physically, ensure the materials on which you record information are hardy and protected from wear and tear. A more contemporary form of documentation is to download wine record software. Documentation software will already contain a variety of important categories of data and you won’t have to worry about losing your records–they’ll be safely stored on your computer. Popular documentation software includes WineBanq, The Wine Cellar Book, The Uncorked Cellar, and Cellartracker. They offer image uploads, personal reviews, and community ratings.
- Regardless of how you choose to document your wine, you should undoubtedly record the cellar row and location number within the cellar’s wine racks. Of course at the beginning tracking the cellar row won’t be an issue, but tracking those first few wines are just as important as tracking ones you’ll buy in five years. It’s up to you how you number the slots in your wine racks, as long as you come up with a consistent system. Some examples of ways to organize are by purchase date, by drink from date, by region, by grape variety, or by wine type. Leave yourself room to grow so you won’t have to rearrange your entire collection as it expands.
- Make notes on who produced your wine. This means identifying the vineyard in which the grapes were grown, the winery from which you purchased it, and a description of the label. How cool would it be to invest in wine from a winery or vineyard that strikes fame in a decade? You could increase the value of the wine by having evidence that you were one of its first collectors. In the same vein, identify the geographical region the wine came from, as well as the wine’s particular grape variety.
- Whenever you buy a bottle to collect, you should be buying a bottle to taste the day or week of. That way you can make tasting notes: notes on aromas, body, tannin, acidity, and finish. There are three aromas to identify when tasting wine, and if you attend a few wine tastings, you’ll catch on and become a more accurate taster. Primary aromas are derived from the grapes, and range from fruity to herbal to floral. Secondary aromas are formed during the winemaking process, specifically the effects of its fermentation and oak aging, or the relationship between the barrel and the liquid inside. Tertiary aromas develop as the wine sits and ages, and can include anything from vanilla to smoke. To make notes on the tannin, pay attention to the wine’s texture, or how gritty or velvety it is. The body is how, in a word or a few, the wine feels as you drink it and hold it in your mouth. And acidity is obviously how acidic or tart it tastes. Finally, take notes on the wine’s finish, or the taste that fills your palate after the wine has gone down your throat (or after it’s been spit out into a spittoon, if you attend a tasting where you drink more than a handful of wines). It may be challenging at first to identify these tastes, but it’s a skill that develops with time. Once you crack open your second, collected bottle, you can compare the tasting notes and appreciate what the aging process has done for your wine.
- Finally, when documenting your wine for collection, save your receipt! You should do this whether you record on documentation software or in a physical log. This serves as physical proof for details about how your purchased it and how much it costs originally, which is important for appraisal purposes.
Most of these pieces of advice will be easy to follow if you communicate with the people you purchase your wine from. All of this information should be acquired from the moment you taste the wine, so be intentional about how you engage with wineries and vineyards, depending on how you acquire your bottles.
Appraising Your Wine Collection
Once you build up a hefty collection of wine, you’ll want to get it regularly appraised. A wine appraisal is generally useful in matters such as divorce settlements, transfers of estate, charity donations, auction preparation, tax purposes, insurance claims, and other personal investments. Of course your meticulous documentation can assist in such matters, so you know how much the wine was worth the day you purchased it, but over time the monetary value of the wine will increase, especially if you become a thoughtful, insightful, expert collector. From time to time, it’s good to know whether your wine’s value has increased, and by how much.
You have some different options for going about acquiring an in-depth wine appraisal. First, and most recommended, is to pay a certified or licensed appraiser to come into your cellar to go over the conditions of the bottles and the contents of your wine documentation. If that’s not an option, you can also get an estimate from an auction house, or trace your bottles back to their roots and ask their retailers for an estimate. (Do not ever allow a certified appraiser try to convince you that you owe them a cut of the value of your collection! This is illegal and should be reported, should they attempt to pull a fast one on you.)
A seasoned wine appraiser will be able to give you a valuation on your wine on the basis of the label’s condition, how high up the bottle’s neck the wine reaches, the performance of the variety of grape the year it was grown and harvested, the reputation of the region from which you purchased it, and the quality of the vineyard the grapes were grown in. Your documentation will be incredibly useful to them should you need this service to be performed! Make it easier on your appraiser to give you an accurate dollar amount your beloved collection is worth.