Introducing the latest answer to the question: “Shit, so where do we put all of those, then?”
Really, the house move forced it on me. In the old house we had built a cupboard in the coldest part of the basement specifically to contain a big wine rack, and shunted some more wine, still in boxes, under the stairs. This was all perfect – largely stable temperatures, no light, largely undisturbed. The new house, though, only had one potentially suitable place and the only way to access it was through its own outside door. In other words, to get a bottle of wine I’d have to actually leave my house. This, clearly, was unworkable, particularly in the rain (and also, more worryingly, it was evidence of an idiotic architect having had a hand in our new house at some point).
Several weeks spent monitoring second-hand and auction sites later, I had myself a wine fridge. A couple of weeks waiting for someone to come and fix it because obviously it was broken when it turned up later, I had myself a functioning wine fridge. A couple of weeks waiting for a free half-day in which to sort it all out later, I had myself a functioning wine fridge full of wine.
I had no idea, before I loaded up the fridge, precisely how much wine I had accumulated (answer: too much). Nor did I really appreciate how lopsided my collection is (though I knew that winemakers in or inspired by the Rhone valley would have produced most of it). For what it’s worth, the shelves in my wine fridge are currently allocated as follows:*
- Spanish & Portuguese reds
- Italian reds
- Southern Rhone red blends (not all from the Rhone)
- Northern Rhone reds
- Australian and Kiwi Shiraz, syrah and shiraz/viognier
- Bordeaux blends (not all from Bordeaux)
- Pinot Noir
- Reds for guilt-free drinking
- Dry, steely whites
- Aromatic whites (quite a few of these also from the Rhone)
- Annoyingly large bottles (mainly also white, some from the Rhone)
But it’s clear that there’s one kind of wine I’ve not got enough of: the kind that costs less than a tenner a bottle. I’m already planning to remedy that situation – just as soon as there’s room.
* Cellartracker informs me that, including wine that is sitting around elsewhere waiting for the day I decide to get it delivered, 81% of everything I own is red. My favourite countries, in order of ownership: France, Italy, Australia, New Zealand, Spain, South Africa, Argentina, Lebanon.
I have a couple of wine fridges, but one is on its way out. What you really want is a spiral cellar (unless you live in a first floor flat, then it’s not such a good idea!)