As a kid, I use to watch the Bond movies and think to myself, “I am going to be sophisticated like him one day.” This was before I understood the difference between a martini and wine, so I decided that wine made you classy. And I don’t think I was alone in that assumption. I can tell by all the wine “aficionados” (really just another word for wine snobs) constantly berating folks about their inferior choice of beverage.
The best of the best? I like the Pine Ideas 40 Bottle Wooden Wine Rack.
What is the trademark of sophistication? For me, the height of sophistication is cracking open an elegant bottle of Caymus Select and pouring a glass of the delicious wine for my guests during a dinner party.
Now don’t get me wrong, I am not that pretentious “wine connoisseur” pretending to take in the “nose” of the beverage, spouting off the scent of juniper, or whatever else they say. I am not THAT GUY.
But I certainly enjoy everything involved with having a bottle of wine with a group of friends. The cork popping, choosing the perfect beverage to pair with your meal, and of course, the tipsy, uninhibited (but safe) fun! So much so that I decided to collect bottles of wine.
And what is the first step to becoming a wine collector?
Getting a wine rack to display the array of bottles you have.
If you are in the early stages of collecting bottles of wine and you are beginning to run out of room in your cabinets to hold them, it is time for you to spring for a wine rack. But there are a few things to consider first.
Today we will go through a few wine racks that should fit the needs of beginner collectors.
What type of wine rack suits you?
The place you store your wine is just as personal as your taste in wine. Just because a particular rack works for your friend doesn’t mean that it is the best choice for you. The most important thing you need to remember is to get a wine rack that suits you best.
With all the aspects that you have to consider, purchasing your first wine rack can look like a daunting task initially. But, break down those aspects and attack them separately and you’ll find that it isn’t as daunting as it appears. So – let’s do that.
Of course, this is number one on the list. You can’t be happy about a purchase you’ve made without first being happy with how it looks. Incidentally, there isn’t much to cover in this area either. It’s all about what you think looks good.
Most of the wine racks you will find is made of wood. It’s been said that there is really only a few species of wood that will work for a wine rack (the most popular being Redwood and Mahogany), and you never want to get the cheap stuff – that’s an accident waiting to happen.
But you’ll also find some metal wine racks that will work just as well. We’ll go further in depth about the difference between metal and wooden wine racks later on.
Do you need to store 20 bottles? 50 bottles? Maybe 100 bottles. Storage capacity is a major player in determining the type of wine rack you should be getting. If you’ve got all the bottles your going to get, go ahead and find a piece that isn’t upgradeable. But if you know that you’re going to get more, you should consider getting component racks that can be expanded.
Wine Rack Styles
The style of wine rack that you want to get will largely depend on what you need the wine rack for.
Do you want something you can place on the kitchen island for easy access? Maybe you want a stand to place next to your bar, others want a dedicated wine cellar. That is why there are several different types of wine racks available.
- Component Racks: component racks are awesome because they allow you to build your wine rack little by little, rather than having to purchase an entirely new one when you run out of space. You can even use these to create a makeshift wine cellar.
- Custom Racks: these racks are used for people who are creating a climate controlled wine cellar. These are much more costly, but if you love your wine then it is an inevitable certainty.
- Countertop Racks: Just like it sounds, these go right on the countertop and are perfect for dinner parties (or just used as a decoration piece).
- Wine Cabinets: Wine cabinets are a great addition to a dining room. They’ll typically hold around 20 bottles and because they have doors the temperature will remain more consistent in there. You can’t add any extra storage space so it isn’t a viable long-term option. But it’s great if you have a rotation of a select few bottles.
- Wall mounted racks: If you have a large collection of bottles and you want to store them without having to take up too much space, then a wall mounted rack is a perfect choice. Installation of these is difficult and tedious, but the finished product is gorgeous.
- Cellar Cubes: If you have a significant amount of unopened wine bottles, you should be looking at cellar cubes. They hold a huge amount of bottles and take up very little space. They aren’t very good for your open bottles so make sure you have something else to store your open bottles in.
Pine Ideas Wooden Wine Rack
Made of unfinished pine, giving you the option to paint and stain it any color you wish (or leave it as is) this rack gives you ultimate customization abilities. The Pine Ideas rack is casual looking and sturdy enough to hold several bottles at once.
It is 40.75 inches high, 17 inches wide and 10.75 inches deep and capable of housing up to 44 bottles at a time (750 ml bottles). Plus it is easily assembled and disassembled so you can move it without any hassle.
Should you get the Pine Ideas Rack?
This is a perfect piece for those of you who are not looking for anything too fancy or expensive. It can hold a reasonable amount of wine bottles and doesn’t take up too much room while doing so. It is unbelievably easy to assemble and maintains structural integrity, even when holding several pounds of wine.
If there were any concerns I had about this wine rack, it is that the bottles are placed too close to each other. This can become an issue once you start getting bottles that are a little bigger than the customary 750 ml, or are shaped differently than normal.
My Gift 54 Bottle Connoisseurs Deluxe Foldable Metal Wine Rack
The My Gift wine rack is good for those who don’t like the wooden look of a wine rack. Being made of metal wire makes it very durable so you can place a lot of weight on it without the worry of bending it.
It has a genius design, making assembly easy and doesn’t even require tools to put it together, and the individual holding cubbies are far enough apart that you can fit much larger wine bottles on the rack without it becoming overcrowded.
It can house 54 wine bottles of various shapes and sizes. It is sturdy, has an elegant profile, and unbelievably easy to put together.
If you favor metal, rather than wood on a wine rack, then I can’t think of any reason you wouldn’t enjoy this product. It is great for standard size bottles and is more than capable of handling much larger bottles as well.
My only complaint with that this isn’t a very heavy wine rack, and the metal is hollow on the inside. This really isn’t a big deal when it comes to everyday use, but I favor heavier wine racks.
Wine Racks America Redwood 36 Bottle Deluxe
This is a gorgeous wine rack. It is made of redwood and comes in 13 different stain options. Sure it only holds 36 bottles at a time, but that should be more than enough for most people, and it will look amazing in your home.
It is 27.5 inches in height, 27.25 inches in width, and 12 inches deep, and will hold even your largest bottles of wine.
The beautiful thing about wine racks from this manufacturer is that they all fit together perfectly. In the event that you do need to add some space, you can purchase another one of these and fit them together.
This product is made in the USA and comes with a lifetime limited warranty and money back guarantee.
Should you get this one?
This wine rack screams elegance and sophistication. It is one of my favorite on the list, and I would recommend it to anyone who asks, as long as they are willing to spend some time assembling it.
Ultra Wine Racks and Cellars Straight Peg
Looking for a unique design that is sure to spark conversation when you entertain guests? This “X” shaped wall mounted wine rack is easily the piece you want. This piece combines the utility you need with the stunning aesthetics you are looking for in a wine rack. It measures out at 42.25″ H x 34″W x 9″ D and holds up to 48 bottles at a time.
It may sound like I’m drooling over this rack – and that’s because I am – but this product is absolutely gorgeous and is guaranteed to be a conversation piece. It certainly won’t be able to be your main housing unit but it’s a great place to store the bottles you keep in rotation.
Modular Wine Rack from TOP WINE RACK
Modular racks are essential if you are planning on expanding your wine collection over the years. I especially like this because you can arrange it however you like and there are multiple color combinations available that you can switch out whenever you feel like it.
It is a wall mounted rack constructed from anodized aluminum, designed to hold several bottles without worry while adding a touch of class and sophistication to any room you place it in.
ioHome Venire Wall-Mounted Wine Rack
This wall mounted rack from ioHome is a great way to add some extra space to your room while providing more storage space for your wine bottles and wine glasses. Purchase a few of these racks to make one large continuous shelf.
When you are mounting this to the wall you will need to make sure that you get at least two of the screws on studs. If you intend on storing a lot of bottles and wine glasses, or just heavy bottles, then make sure you secure it to the wall properly.
You need to display your wine on this durable and classy wine rack. You can mount it easily on any wall for a perfect display. It comes with a raised panel on the top shelf to protect items from falling off. The center compartment can hold six standard size bottles, while the upper side can hold six glasses of wine. It has a walnut coating finish, which makes it look unique and beautiful. It has the following features and specifications;
- It comes with wall-mounting hardware
- The center compartment can accommodate six standard-size wine bottle rows, store and displays your favorites wine
- It has six glass holder rows which store and display your beautiful collection
- It’s constructed from sturdy MDF and wood veneers, which are durable and long-lasting
Creekside 24 Bottle Stackable Wine Cubes
Cellar cubes offer the most amount of storage space while taking up the least amount of real estate. They’re generally cubes that are sectioned into triangles to optimize space.
This cellar cube wine rack comes in a set of two cubes (both holding 24 bottles) that are stackable and you can choose between stained or non-stained options. Personally, I like to purchase non-stained racks so that I can make it fit my furniture.
Le Cellier Wine Rack
This is technically a modular wine rack, but in all honesty, I wouldn’t put more than one of these together. They simply aren’t sturdy enough to be making a wall-sized wine rack.
Where this model shines is the compact nature of the rack. It fits perfectly inside of kitchen cabinets, turning your regular cabinets into wine cabinets, saving quite a bit of space. As long as you have the extra cabinet space.
The Le Cellier wine rack is beautiful wine storage facility that can hold twelve bottles of your best wine collection in one rack. It costs less than your favorite bottle of wine. It’s made of the ABS plastic material which is strong and durable. You can get this rack in various colors such as red, dark brown or tan. It comes with a wall mounting bracket to attach it to the wall.
Oceanstar Bamboo Wine Rack
Bamboo is among the strongest and most durable material in the world, making it a great option as a wine rack. It is unbelievably elastic and highly resistant to wear and tear while remaining relatively light-weight.
The Oceanstar bamboo rack comes with two shelves that can be placed sided by side, or on top of each other. It’s a module rack that can be added to over time, and because of bamboos properties, there is little risk of it collapsing under the weight of your wine bottles.
The engineering and design of this modular wine rack are incredible. You can stack the pieces nearly up to eye level without any issues.
WGX Hanging Glass and Wine Racks
The WGX is a hanging wine rack that’s sure to add some flair to your bar. Hang it over the bar for easy access to your favorite bottles and a beautiful display of your favorite stem glasses.
It holds up to 11 wine bottles and 30 glasses and adjustable from 12-inches to 23.6-inches in height.
Why is this a good option for you? If you’ve got an island in your kitchen or in your basement, this will add a wonderful appearance. Get it in bronze for a more rustic look, or purchase it in black for more of a chic modern look.
Why are wine racks important?
You could put your bottles of wine in the cabinet, you could put the bottles in the fridge. Sure, you could treat your wine like that. But where’s the fun in that? More importantly, how does that help your wine stay fresh once you’ve popped the cork.
When storing your wine you should have the bottle sitting on its side (preferably tilted downward a bit) so that the cork stays moist. This does two things; one, it keeps the cork from dry rotting and crumbling. Two, keeping the cork wet prevents air from getting into the wine. Wine oxidation is something you should avoid at all cost.
Wine racks get your bottles stored horizontally, prolonging the life of your opened bottles. Some racks take it a step further by incorporating a slight downward angle for even better results.
Difference between wood and metal racks
Aside from the obvious (the appearance of them) the only difference between the two is the amount of space they take up.
Metal racks are typically narrower and easier to put together, making them great for people who have less space to work with.
Wooden racks are usually a bit sturdier and better for long-term solutions to a wine rack. They’re more difficult to put together, but once they are together they are absolutely beautiful. If you have more traditional furniture then you should probably opt for a wooden wine rack.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the purpose of the wine cellar and what is the best condition for storing wine?
If you want to age your wine, then a wine cellar is a must have. Usually, wine does respond to the environment. The surrounding within which the wine is stored determines the maturity date and character when consumed. For you to protect your wine, you need to control temperature, light, vibration, and humidity. Wine should be kept under cool and constant temperatures. The recommended temperature for storing wine is 55 degrees Fahrenheit or 13 degrees Celsius. It is essential that there’s no variation in this temperature.
The aging process of wine depends on the temperature; the higher it is, the faster it ages and the colder the surrounding environment, the slow it ages. The high temperature can also have an effect on alcohol separation. Low temperatures lead to the development of deposits in the wine. When the temperature varies abruptly, the aging process is interrupted. It causes the contraction and expansion of the cork and also the organic components of the wine. Steady fluctuations may not have a severe effect on the wine, but repeated variations of this significance will interrupt the proper aging process of your wine.
What would you prefer between the custom wine racks and wine rack kits?
There are various configurations and options with the wine rack kit. Determine whether you want to put it on the ceiling or at five feet high. Also, determine which options, wood species, and configuration you want. The wine rack kit offers many shapes, but the custom wine rack provides several of them. You’ll save your money if you’re flexible.
What is the best wood to use when building and designing a wine cellar?
I would advise you to use tropical hardwoods, such as mahogany. Wine cellars made of mahogany are resistant to rot and moisture, and hard, making them robust enough to handle large quantities of wine. You can also use redwood or softwood. Don’t use the aromatic woods such as cedar, since it’ll grow mildew when wet unless it’s treated.
How can I store a screw-capped wine bottle?
Generally, there is no harm when they are stored horizontally, but I would advise you to store the bottles vertically for the following reasons. First, it helps save the space, thus giving you more room to keep more bottles of wine. Screwcapped wine comes with a synthetic liner that holds the rim of the bottle firmly. The coating doesn’t require moisture to keep the seal tight and thus doesn’t need to be kept horizontally. Also, it’s not clear whether synthetic liners will have any effects on the flavor of the wine or not. Second, storing the bottles in a vertical position makes it more convenient when you want to serve. After spending several years in the cellar, the bottles which are store horizontally should be turned vertically for approximately eight hours before use. This will allow the deposits developed over an extended period of storage to sink to the bottom. However, there’s no need to wait if the wines were stored vertically.
Should I purchase a cooling system for my wine cellar?
Most modern homes have warm and dry basements, which are not suitable for wine storage. In some cases, it’s important to condition the temperature in the wine cellar. The most common tool is a wall system that looks like the standard air conditioner. It helps in removing heat from the basement and blows it away into a room on the other side. You can also use the ducted cooling system since it’s flexible and it deposits the heat remotely.
How long can I store my wine?
White wines are also known as drinking wines, while red wine is aging wine. The time it takes for red wine to mature depends on its type, complexity, vintage, and quality. The element that makes the wine taste dry (tannins), which come from a grape stems, are the reason behind the aging process. They produce a bitter taste that eventually precipitates out, allowing the other components of the wine to come forth. When correctly kept, the red wines can be stored for several decades or even centuries since they have a high tannin content.
Wrap – Up
Getting a wine rack that is right for your needs is extremely important. But what is equally important is how you store your wine.
Many people buy wine racks and place them in the kitchen to set their collection on display, but this is a mistake. Wine should be kept in a cool place away from sunlight and wild temperature swings.
Regardless of which rack you choose, if you don’t store your product properly, the wine will go bad quickly.
So make sure to figure out the proper storage instructions, and then decide which wine rack you want.
- Wine Making Talk forum – Wine Cellar and Storage
- Wine Spectator forum – Budget wine cellar in the basement?