Wine Cellar Innovations Blog

ArchivesOctober 2010 - Wine Cellar Innovations Blog

Buying a Wine Rack without Spending Too Much

October 31st, 2010

Happy Halloween! I hope you are enjoying your spooky day. Hopefully it is involving some delicious wine bottles that you can enjoy while your doorbell is ringing tonight.  If you are looking for a wine rack to house your bottles, you have come to the right spot.  Ending today, our 15% off sale on wood wine racks is a great deal. A wine racking system does not have to be too expensive. Most especially for those people with a very tight budget, opting for the cheaper wine racks an option. But when we say cheaper, it does not mean you are risking quality. Remember, there are a large number of good-quality and well-built wine racks you can select from which come in a more reasonable price compared with others.

You just have to know how to distinguish which among those selections are the best choices. Here are three basic features you must know.

Material

Quality comes with the kind of material used. It is essential that you do a bit of research on what type of wood species you would prefer used in building your wine racks. This serves as your key guarantee that they are capable of withstanding the test of time. Also, you have a choice between full or short depth in your wine racks. Both options will support and protect your wine but if less material is used in the product, it will cost less as well.

Durability

A wine rack designed to handle wine bottles, in hundreds or thousands more, is definitely one way to know if it’s durable and strong enough to carry all the bottle weight. Try to educate yourself how the racking system is customized or assembled. This way, you will get a good assessment of how stable and sturdy your chosen wine rack is.

Functionality

Another significant feature a wine rack must possess – functionality. The wine rack should be purposeful in a way that you can maximize its storage capacity. Not only this, it can also be easily adjusted and modified accordingly to your needs as well.

These are only three guidelines to cite. In fact, there are a lot more to know and keep in mind. But with these three vital features as your foundation, you are certainly walking on the right track. If you are still somewhat hesitant on which one to choose, simply ask other wine lovers to assist you with your quest. Or, you can call us up anytime and let us help you determine which among our wine racking systems best fit your likings.

Build a Wine Cellar in the Basement: Basement Wine Cellar

October 30th, 2010

A wine cellar is not just a place to store wines. It should be the ideal environment where wines comfortably age as they reach perfection. Thus, building a basement wine cellar is a very scrupulous job to do and there are a lot of things you need to consider.

Before getting into all the building process, the first priority you must think of is where to locate the wine cellar. Actually, wine cellars can be built in almost any room within the house, but, it is still best to be housed in the basement. Why – for the reason that, basements have very little or no direct contact with sunlight, can be modified with good ventilation and spacious enough to accommodate anything in it.

Another factor why building a basement wine cellar is most recommendable when building a wine cellar is – there is less difficulty in maintaining proper temperature and humidity of the entire room. It is very essential to continuously regulate a 55-58 degrees and 55-75% relative humidity within a wine cellar so that the corks are kept moist and the wines are prevented from getting damaged and spoiled.

And, to make sure you get to achieve the ideal temperature within the cellar, installing wine cellar cooling units are the ones in demand. These cooling systems come in various types and sizes that’s why careful selection plays a key role. This simply means it is your homework to complete your research on what type of cooling units to set up. Since basements commonly come spacious, it will solely depend on you which kind, how big or small, the cooling units you need to use.

If you are finding it a bit tricky to figure which cooling system to put up, seeking recommendations from other connoisseurs is a smart option to pursue. Ask for advice and try to ask and add a few more things on how to make your basement the most favorable place to customize a wine cellar.

Talking about all the works of putting up a wine cellar is definitely challenging. When starting any research project, it can be overwhelming but with a little research and finding out those important fact, it can be fun. That’s why, to ease the burden you are about to face when planning on building your own wine cellar in your basement, allow us to assist you from start to finish. Why worry if with just one call everything can be settled quickly. Let us help you achieve your dream wine cellar now.

Wine Rack Kits To Die For: The Designer Series (Part II of III)

October 28th, 2010

A look at Wine Cellar Innovation’s different wine rack versions for various needs, tastes, and budgets!

Yesterday we talked about one of our wine rack kit collections. If you missed it, check out our feature on the Vintner Series. You can also take a look at the Vintner wine racks on our website.

Today we’d like to introduce you to our Designer Series – attractive, contemporary and clean-styled designs that are definitely to die for! Because of these wine racks’ flexibility, quality and excellent wine-storage options, they are perfect for both small living spaces and full wine-cellars!

The Designer Series


Boasting of the ultimate blend of quality, cost, and craftsmanship, our Designer Series utilizes the best portions of our custom amenities, and mixes in the affordability of a mass produced item to offer you the best value for your money.

These wine racks are all six feet tall, and are designed to accommodate wine bottles that are 3 – 3½” in diameter. Like our Vintner Series, it has the same bottle slot width of 3 13/16” which means it can still fit your larger Bordeaux and Burgundy wine bottles. It features full-depth wooden wine racks at 13 ½” deep, where each bottle is cradled on two rails that are cut with beveled ends and rounded edges. This ensures that the labels will not tear whenever you remove the bottles. This series is available in a variety of wood and different stain options.

Adding a bit of style and more creative storage options are our vertical wine displays, quarter round shelves, and waterfall wine racks!  Worth checking out are the pretty diamond cube and diamond bins, which feature a decorative face trim, as well the table tops (and archways).

This series also boasts of wine rack kits with wine display rows, including the curved corners.  They are also structurally designed to accommodate additional wine storage above racking, making them an ideal wine racking system for every wine lover!

With our Designer Series wine racks, you’ll have elegance and sophistication combined with creative storage space for your growing wine collection!

Next week: Learn more about our Traditional Redwood Series Wine Rack Kits!

Wine Rack Kits To Die For: The Vintner Series (Part I of III)

October 27th, 2010

A look at Wine Cellar Innovation’s different wine rack versions for various needs, tastes, and budgets!

We’re all about excellent wine storage over here at Wine Cellar Innovations, and of course, we’re mad about creating fabulous wine racks of all shapes and styles for wine lovers!

Here at Wine Cellar Innovations, we have the 3 specific types of wine racks – the Vintner Series, the Designer Kit series, and the Traditional Redwood Series.

Wine storage can both be a space challenge and a design challenge, so combining form and function is the key to successfully displaying your wine. You can choose from over 30 wine racks from our Vintner Series, each one giving you the most space efficient, visually appealing, and cost-effective method of display!

Today’s post features the Vintner Series, which offers a wide variety of racking options, along with the ability to mix and match racking heights and styles.

The Vintner Series


This modular wine rack collection can be crafted from a variety of different woods all 4 foot and 3 foot stackable wine racks.  Let us tell you a little bit why modular wine racks like these are great: it’s easy to grow your collection with them!  While it may start with space consideration for just a few bottles, modular wine racks can be added on as your collection grows. This type of wine rack is also great when it comes to price considerations.

Since you can add wine racks as you go, keeping pace with your interest and collection, you can also pace your budget accordingly. As the different racks are stackable, you can take different combinations of three and four foot racks to create 6, 7, 8, 9 or even over 10 feet high depending on your available space.  We have various combinations of crowns and base moldings which you can use to complete a floor to ceiling construction between the one foot increments of the stackable Vintner series racks. Why, our Vintner series gives you a custom appearance at a mass produced price!

The Vintner collection was designed to accommodate wine bottles that are 3 – 3 1/2″ in diameter. This means that actual bottle slot width is a roomy 3 3/4th which can handle those larger Bordeaux and Burgundy wine bottles.  Aside from our beautiful wood choices, the wine racks featured in this collection are also available in these stain options:

  • light stain
  • classic mahogany
  • dark walnut
  • midnight black

Indeed, the modular wine rack kits from this collection perform the dual function of organizing your wine bottles, as well as displaying them beautifully. With the benefit of stackability, you’ll be able to enjoy them for years to come!

Tomorrow: Learn more about our Designer Series Wine Rack Kits!

Tech Tuesday Episode #7 – Primo Vino Commercial Wine Racks

October 26th, 2010

Who doesn’t love a unique wine shop with an old world charm?

This is what Primo Vino is all about, and we were more than happy to customize wine racks for their store. Primo Vino has a great selection of wine, as well as high-end spirits from around the world, micro-brewed and import beers, artisan cheese and meats, cigars, and gourmet products.

We spoke to Keller Ford, General Manager of Primo Vino, who told us that for years, there has only been one choice in town to get a nice bottle of wine —  the local grocery store. And it didn’t have a liquor store which was crazy! The wine shop is located in Cape Girardeau, the biggest town within the southern part of Missouri.  Its team thought it was a good market for a higher end store, thus, Primo Vino was born.

The racks were created with the help of Brett Norris and finished in April by Joe Glass, our excellent Installation Manager, and today, Primo Vino clients are loving the wine displays. They especially LOVE how it’s so easy to find wine, and of course, the store is enjoying high sales from the high end display of wines.

Ah, there’s nothing like a very pleased client to make our day.

If you have been following our Tech Tuesdays, you’re surely familiar with the residential wine cellars we’ve created. Last week, for example, we featured a residential wine cellar in Atlanta, Georgia.

Well, Wine Cellar Innovations also designs and mass produces an entire line of wine displays for retail wine stores. Clients have loved our commercial wine racks – we have everything from wine display islands, wine display bins, individual wine bottle displays, accent pieces and more. Check out these gorgeous wine rack displays showcased in Primo Vino’s store:

The store utilizes several beautiful Triple Tier Merchandisers and Maximizers wine displays — our most popular commercial wine racks. These sturdy, freestanding wine display racks are perfect for sales, as each wine display bottle is in the optimal visual range.  It features full wine bottle depth coverage at 13 ½” deep and beveled ends and rounded edges to prevent labels from tearing.

The cellar also features an Adjustable Shelf Wine Cabinet, also one of our best selling commercial wine display racks. These wine cabinets are adaptable full-height cabinets and the adjustable shelf cabinet allows you to stock a wide variety of products, and are designed to merchandise high volume wines. The display trays can designed with solid wood and can hold up to 200lbs.

Perhaps the best feature of this wine cellar is its outstanding placement of different wine display islands. We can just imagine rows and rows of wines cradled on these rails, and customers not getting enough of the sight of hundreds of bottles of wine! From two-tier displays, triple tier displays to wall wine units, it’s no wonder why this store has captured every Primo Vino customer’s heart.

Also worth mentioning is the wine racks’ darker colored stain. The client mentioned that he checked out a shop with natural wood with no stain and he personally preferred the darker stain option. These racks’ Premium Redwood stain indeed bring an old world charm to the entire store. With fabulous lighting that completes the store’s homey yet classy look, it’s no wonder why Primo Vino is considered the prettiest retail store in Cape Gerardo! In fact, it has been said to be by far the best looking wine shop in the state of Missouri.

Wine Cellar Innovations is proud to be a part of this wine shop’s success by contributing to its customers’ wine shopping experience.  If you’re loving these photos, check out more options on our commercial wine racks page.

Stay tuned to next week’s Tech Tuesday!

Solve Your Wine Storage Woes With Easy Assembly Wine Rack Kits

October 25th, 2010

Let’s say you’re a budding wine connoisseur.  You know it’s time to clear off the bottles cluttering your kitchen counter top, and use a stylish, modern wine rack instead. After all, you see yourself buying more bottles every week, don’t you?

Shopping for wine racks can be a very pleasurable experience. It’s just the decision making part that is tricky! We are definitely spoilt for choice when it comes to wine storage systems. You may have seen some great designs, but finding the perfect fit seems hard.

You have 3 choices: have your wine rack customized, build your own, or just find the perfect one from our selection of wine rack kits!

Customizing or building your own rack has many benefits too. For one thing, you can create a custom rack that no one else has, and fits your needs exactly! With DIY wine racks, you are free to decide on what type of wood you want, and even pick the color stain, finish, or paint you will be using on your rack that will best suit your room décor. Moreover, building your own wine rack can be a great weekend project!

There are several things you need to consider before choosing your wine rack:

  • location and available space
  • the amount of wine you will be storing
  • the size of the bottles
  • the total weight of wine

Here at Wine Cellar Innovations, we give you PLENTY of wine rack options! Our racks combine strength and aesthetic appeal. We’re sure you can find that one rack that’s perfect for your space, so check out our easy to assemble wine rack kits!

Maybe you’ll fancy our Redwood 6 Column Individual Wine Rack, our Individual Bottle Wine Rack from the fabulous Vintner Series or the very eye catching right falling waterfall display wine rack.

With DIY wine rack kits, always read the directions thoroughly and take your time in assembly. Surely, your wine collection – and the wine rack you assembled yourself will always be a great conversation starter when family or friends come over for dinner.

The Significance of Wine Cellar Cooling Units

October 24th, 2010

Wine Cellar CoolingCaring for your wine collection doesn’t stop from building a wine cellar of your own.  The truth is, it is just the beginning of carefully making sure each bottle gets optimum care as much as possible.

The next most important aspect that you need to keep in mind is temperature. Every wine lover knows the significance of having the ideal wine storage temperature for wines. In fact, this factor can make or break your wine collection. Thus, knowing the appropriate temperature for your wine cellar is a must!

To properly cool and humidify a cellar, you need a cooling system designed specifically for cooling a wine cellar. 55-58 degrees and 55-75% relative humidity must always be maintained and these can be accomplished with the use of wine cellar cooling units. Some people, like Charles Klatskin insist upon keeping their wines at a chillier 50 degrees, so while your temperature can vary, the important point here is to never cook your wine. Leaving your wine in a hot car during the summer could do irreparable damage.

Wine cellar cooling units are mainly used for wine refrigeration purposes to keep every bottle in good shape and from getting spoiled. They are designed to keep humidity instead of drying the cellar, although sometimes additional humidification may be necessary in very dry climates. And, the good thing about it is, there are wide arrays of cooling units available to use but each serve their function best depending on the kind of cellar you have.

If you have the budget, going for a split air system fits perfectly for you. This type of cooling unit can be expensive but it will prove its worth in time. They are very recommendable as they act like a central air-conditioning system which provides you with total control of your wine cellar cooling.

But what if you have very limited budget? Worrying is not the answer. You can seek other alternatives.  Please feel free to contact one of our design specialists to talk about your unique situation so we can help you make the best decision.

Wine Cellar Innovations offers a selection of wine cellar cooling systems starting from Winezone Ductless Split Refrigeration, Winezone Split Air Handler, Whisperkool, Breezaire, and Wine Cellar Humidification. Feel free to browse through site and you will surely see one that best matches your needs.

Investing in Wine – Does the Dollar Have you Down?

October 23rd, 2010

Investing in WinesInvesting in stocks can be scary. What else can we invest in? I know, you know this! WINE.

This is coming straight from CNBC as they discuss with Charles Klatskin why investing in wine can be profitable.

Why does it make sense? Wine is a ‘fluid’ market. Asia and other third world countries are buying our wine and bidding it straight up. Charles Klatskin is a real estate developer turned wine investor who is having great success doing this very thing.

Klatskin shows off a few wines including a Lafite Rothschild 1982. Rothschild is worth around $5,000 a bottle at this time. Another one of his wines came out at $70 a bottle and is now $3,000 a bottle after a few years.

Between Bordeaux and Burgundy they are the best investments. California has a half-dozen wines that can appreciate like this but most are coming from France.

It’s interesting that Klatskin keeps his wines at 50 degrees, which is colder than most. He advises to simply start reading all you can about wines to get you started. Once you invest your own money, you really learn a lot. Team up with a quality store and they will help you. Klatskin only buys futures and that is the only way you are going to make money. He also checks the weather report!

Is it a hobby or is it an investment? This is no cheap hobby, that’s for sure! Klatskin advises that you need $150,000 to start investing in wine.

The big question we all want to know is can you make any money your first year? After two years, once the wine is delivered, you will make money.

Klatskin made more money in wine, than he ever made in anything else. What was his average return? Are you ready for this? His average return is 20% per year.

Worst moments? The 80’s were the worst.

Are you ready to start investing in wines? If there is anything left in your bank account after the past few years, you may want to look into it! If you already invest in wines now, what is your average return?

Cigar Humidors: A Must-Have For Every Cigar Aficionado

October 21st, 2010

Every cigar aficionado needs a cigar humidor.

Cigar HumidorJust in case you’re not familiar with it, a cigar humidor is a specialized box that is used to store cigars. What’s special about it is it maintains a perfect balance of temperature and humidity for extending the life of cigars. They not only hold and preserve your cigars, they also nicely display your collection!

More than just a home for your cigars  

You know you should never store cigars in a refrigerator, as they can dry them out, ruining them. Perhaps the most important aspect of a cigar humidor is its climate controlled environment. The climate controlled environment that your precious cigars will be housed in keeps your cigars fresh. This means it preserves the look and taste over long periods of time.

Just like wine racks, humidors come in a variety of styles with different shapes and sizes.

Price-wise, they can range anywhere from $50 to thousands of dollars. Yes, they can be expensive, but this is because they can automatically heat, cool, dehumidify and humidify your cigars according to changes in the outside environment.

If you’re in the market for one (or know someone who is) and can’t find one to your liking, you can have one customized according to your taste. If customization costs are a little too much for you right now, you can also customize and chest or cabinet you have into a cigar humidor!  There are wine cellar humidification systems that allow you to do this.

In your local cigar shop, you’ll most likely find a walk-in humidor. These are super sized versions of cigar humidors — custom tailored rooms filled with various brands of cigars.  Needless to say, cigar humidors are essentials for any serious cigar smoker.

Whether you’re a casual cigar smoker or an affluent aficionado, you know those fine Cuban cigars deserve a home. Invest in a cigar humidor to keep your collection lasting longer and smelling and tasting fresh all the time!

Lighting Up Your Wine Cellar

October 20th, 2010

It used to be that lighting in your cellar was frowned upon.

Every wine lover knows that improper lighting can damage fine wines, because it heats wine, degrading the organic compounds within it. Surely we don’t want light to destroy a perfectly good bottle!

But with today’s cool fluorescent and LED lights, having a well-illuminated wine cellar is a good thing! When planning your wine cellar construction, you want enough light to be able to read labels, but you don’t want so much light either that can cause damage.

Why install wine cellar lighting?


Well, we can give you a few reasons for installing some fancy lights in your wine cellar:

1. You will be able to see where you are going and what you are doing, cutting down the time you have to spend in your cellar. Yes, we know some of you love to spend time there, but did body temperature can change a modestly sized cellar’s temperature fairly quickly! This is why limiting the time spent in there is usually a good thing.

2. Having good lighting saves you from having to rely on a flashlight to find your way through those racks and prevents you from tearing/snagging on labels, or knocking over some bottles!

3. Aesthetic purposes. Those cool lights (hidden or in plain view) have an eye-pleasing effect, serving as an accent to your wine cellar atmosphere! To see what we mean, check out the lighting in one of our residential wine cellar installations.

Lighting is practical and decorative, and it should allow you to admire your cellar and select your wine. Of course, when building a wine cellar, keep in mind that you want as little light as possible to reach your bottles.
Some lighting options

Wine Cellar Innovations has some great options for wine cellar lighting: Led lighting for those archways, in high reveal display racking and back-lighting in crown molding; Flourescent Slimlites for illuminating light boxes or backlighting stained glass, and Low Profile IC Can Lighting for accent and task lighting applications.

If you want enough light in the room for entertaining, just make sure you don’t use so much that it creates heat, especially near the wine racks. To get it right, check with a design professional before you begin your wine cellar construction to choose the lighting that’s right for you and your cellar.

Lighting for your wine cellar is an investment, so think carefully about where you install your lights and which types of lighting to go for. If you have any questions, please contact us so we can help you through the process.

Getting an Organized Wine Cellar – Part II

October 19th, 2010

Reading Gary Peterson’s last post on how he keeps his wine cellar organized makes me remember how disorganized my own wine cellar used to be. I was constantly finding jewels that had been tarnished by age.I now keep a spreadsheet with a grid to locate the row and column but I added something which is visually easy or a lazy way of keeping in touch with my collection.

As you can see above, it shows display bottles which are lit with LED lights that produce virtually no heat. Showing you an overview of how the bottles are situated, you can see how the picture below shows how those display bottles fit in the wine cellar. Some displays have eleven bottles below for an even case, some have nine above, some have three below.

As I drink down a case I will move it to a smaller collection of nine or three. With the display row softly lit I can walk around the room and see the labels of the wine in the column above or below.

It is easy to forget about logging a wine out but it easy to see open spaces. When I buy new wines I keep them on the counter in the case until I can log them in. I love my wine collection but I get lazy sometimes and the display row system allows me to stay in touch between those time when I can get into the details.

Are there any good tips on how you stay updated and keep an organized wine cellar?

Tech Tuesday Episode #6 – Virtual Tour of a Wine Cellar

October 19th, 2010

“We always wanted a wine cellar…”

Our installation scrapbook continues with this residential wine cellar that was installed in place of an exercise room that was no longer used. The owners tore down the room and made way for the beautiful entertainment tasting room you see now.

Where: Atlanta, Georgia
Project #: 201160
When: September 2010
Wood: Platinum Series in All Heart Redwood
Maximum Storage Capacity:  2800 wine bottles

Atlanta Georgia Wine Cellar Floorplan

Be sure to take the virtual walk through above.  The sidelight doors and glass panels provide for very easy viewing and give it a very contemporary look and feel to match the decor in the rest of the residential home.

The wood racks are done in All Heart Redwood with our Platinum Series with a light lacquer stain on them.  The tasting table really gives them the ability to entertain and make way for their wine accessories. Individual bottle racking is finished with beveled and rounded rails to protect labels. With the solid archway, it gives them a beautiful focal point as well as a place to hang their artwork in this Georgia wine room.

Notice the LED lighting for their display row.  The special lighting is essential to light the room without harming the wine.  The display row is very attractive for easy viewing of your favorite wines.

The installation on the project was on completed on target by our very own wine cellar installation team. If you need help installing your wine cellar, contact us for professional assistance.

What is your favorite part of this cellar?

Choose the Best Wood for Your Custom Wine Cellar

October 18th, 2010

Choosing the wood species to use in your custom wine cellar is one of the important decisions to make before the wine room construction can even begin. The type of wood will affect not only the aesthetic factor of the wine room but also the main purpose of storing or holding the wines.

There are varieties of wood species and stains to choose from. Among the considerations that must be given attention during selection are: durability of the wood, cost and aesthetics. Redwood, mahogany and pine are among the most common or popular choices for wood wine racks.

Small Wine RacksPine species are the most economical among the 3 wood types. A very notable advantage about pine wood is its ability to be stained using almost any type of wood finishes. So if you use pine for your wine storage, you have the freedom to choose any stain color that would match or blend with other upholstery and furniture pieces in your wine cellar.

Redwood is the standard wood used for wine storage rooms and shelves.  This type of wood has natural oils in it which serves as its preservatives against moisture and mildew. We love the unstained look of Redwood but if you prefer to use a stain, our water based stains will enhance the beauty and the grains within.

There are two types of redwood to choose from – “All Heart Redwood” and “Premium Redwood.” The former has a consistent, dark tone and is more expensive compared to the latter, which has more color variations.

Mahogany is another popular choice of wood to use in constructing wine shelves, cellars and rooms. It is durable, resistant to warping and swelling and moisture decay. It can also be stained and lacquer-finished to keep it from mildew and deterioration due to temperature changes. This type of wood material is highly recommended for standard to premium wine storage designs.

All of these three wood species are good construction materials for the wine room, cellar or shelves. Your choice of wine cellar wood depends on other factors like budget, storage needs and specification, air-conditioning, wine cellar cooling unit, and aesthetics. Regardless of your concerns, all three woods can still be built into magnificent wine racks and storage. So choose among them and have your wine cellar built immediately.

Should You Keep Your Wine Cellar or Wine Closet Organized?

October 17th, 2010

This is a Guest Post from Gary Peterson:

A Wine To Die ForOk, I am one of the “Wine Guys” that finally figured out that he needed a wine cellar. I had a modest collection, which I was continuing to re-locate to cooler sections of my home, depending on the current weather. One day, a few years ago when I decided to get into the wine business, I realized it was time, and I built my wine cellar. It’s nothing spectacular, but it does have the insulation and cooling / humidity control needed to keep my collection properly. I have a capacity of about 1200 bottles, and presently, it contains roughly 500. I say “roughly” because I really don’t know exactly! That brings me to the point of this blog.

A couple of weeks ago, while entertaining a few friends, my lovely wife brought up the subject of what an excellent job I had done constructing our wine cellar, and how I had used a “free” program on the internet to categorize, and keep track of all our wines. She asked me to explain my system, and tell them about this program. So I, being the “willing partner”, explained to everyone how I had discovered “Cellar Tracker” and how it worked, keeping track of my wines, when I added them to my cellar, and subtracted them when I consumed them. It also kept track of the age of the wine, and suggested “drink by” dates. A very excellent system, very much like the one offered by Wine Spectator. She went on to tell them about the plastic tags that I used to identify each bottle, including specially marking the ones that were the “expensive” ones, which were over $100 per bottle and she told them she was “not allowed to touch”! Actually, I clarified that those were specially marked, so they wouldn’t end up out on the deck, being consumed by “The Ladies” on a Friday afternoon “Happy Hour”.

Now, let’s get to the point of this. I was afraid, very afraid, that she would invite them all into the wine cellar. Why you ask? Because over the last few months, I had let it go, opening many bottles, leaving multiple stacks of ID tabs in the wooden racks, and not canceling them in the computer program. I also had many new bottles of wine in the racks, and had not entered them in the program. My wine cellar was a mess!

I know that it is important to have a wine cellar, with controlled conditions, if you are keeping good quality wines for any length of time. If you have a good size collection of “drink now” and “drink later” it is a necessity. If you have bottles in closets, garages, under your bed and worse? You are being unfair to your wines, your wallet, and your palate. But, just as bad is the one who has the wine cellar, and the means to control it and its inventory, and doesn’t. I know I have some nice wines in there that I should have already consumed, and are probably past their time, shame on me. So, what am I doing this weekend? You guessed it: inventory control. Cheers,

Gary Peterson,  A Wine To Die For

Wine Storage 101 – Great Tips for your Wine Cellar

October 17th, 2010

Home and Wine StorageThere are a multitude of ways on how wine can be kept at home. Wine racks which are customized accordingly to your needs or a custom wine cellar, if you want to have one in the house, will both do very well. However, prior to building any of these two, keep in mind that the number of wine bottles significantly plays a very huge role in the whole process.

If you are just starting out with your collection, smaller wine racks are a practical choice. They could be stored in your pantry or garage where you keep your wine if you are an informal collector. But, once they grow in number and there is no longer extra room for storage, a wine cellar will keep them intact.

With regards to wine racks, there are various kinds and styles. They can be made in wood or metal. And, a good feature wine racks possess is they can be tailored accordingly to how you’d like them to appear. They do not only provide you storage for your wine bottles but also give additional aesthetic value to your home as well.

But, when it comes to wine cellar humidity, the temperatures are very critical. It is important that you store wine in a cool, dark place. High temperature destroys the wine that is why being certain to maintain appropriate temperature at all cost is significant. Humidity also affects the wine. Proper humidity prevents corks from drying out. Otherwise, the wines taste bad.

Another factor to consider when planning your custom wine cellar is to choose the place where you want to build it. If you have a basement in your home, it can serve as an appropriate space to convert to a wine cellar. According to the space you have, you can start and be creative about how you can take full advantage of space.

Whatever type of wine storage you think you need, what is important is that you give importance to the security of your collection. If you have trouble deciding what to use, you can always ask advice from people who are experts when it comes to wine racks and cellars.

Pine Wine Racks: Perfect For The Wine Lover On A Budget

October 16th, 2010

Beautiful wood wine racks come in various wood types, stains and finishes — we all know that.  We’re pretty sure that if you’re currently on the market for one, you’ve seen some great wood options.

Because wines do not come cheap, they have to be housed in a well-made wood wine rack. The only problem is, these “well-made” racks can come in a hefty price. So now you wonder: “Which wood species should I use?”

There are a relatively good number of wood species varieties out there, and you know you need to carefully identify and select which particular wood species would work best for you and your budget.

Pines make great wine racks

A great alternative for the wine lover on a budget is pine.

They’re one of the cheapest wood species available! Have you seen it primed and painted, or stained and sealed? Pines make beautiful pieces of wine rack furniture. Wood wine racks made from pine wood gives you that earthy feel. We love how they can be attractively stained in a rustic finish to enhance its beauty, which makes pine wine racks a lovely home for your precious wine collection.

Pine is a versatile wood and can be finished in a wide variety of colors. It can be clear-coated to highlight the clean, clear graining of the wood, and although it is not classified as a hardwood, pine is durable and sturdy! Yes, it may be cheaper compared to redwood and mahogany, but pine wine racks can support the weight of your wine bottles. The smell of a wine rack made from pine stays fresh always, so home owners love it.

We know several people who enjoy the natural, rustic look of unfinished pine wood. Others prefer the stained version, finished with a rich color which makes a great conversation piece in homes. When you do decide to go for a pine wine rack, you can trust that you are getting a quality, sturdy, affordable wood that’s right for your budget.

Why Redwood is an Obvious Choice for Wine Racks

October 14th, 2010

Picking a good quality and durable wood species for your wood wine racks or cellars can be a hard personal choice. In fact, hunting for the right one can swiftly get nerve-wracking especially if you have a few options in mind.

Our wine cellar designers are experienced in the art of selecting the perfect wine cellar wood for your project. We also have several online tools that can help you in your selection.

The main wood that we prefer to recommend to our valued clients is the sturdy, hard-wearing, and highly-prized lumber that is renowned for its amazing unique features – REDWOOD.

There are a lot of queries and debates questioning the credibility of Redwood in terms of using it as main wood specie in manufacturing wine storage. As a matter of fact, the issue has already built confusion and uncertainty in the industry. That is why we are here to present to you every single and very important detail why Redwood is the best choice especially when it comes to building your own wine racks or wine cellars at home.

The ‘Prince’ of Softwoods

Although considered being one of the lightest of softwoods, Redwood has established a strong reputation of providing sufficient strength and resilience for a wide variety of uses. Not only this, Redwood delivers legendary value and incomparable genuine exquisiteness.

Now, why choose Redwood?

“Redwood is one of the world’s best structural lumbers.”

Redwood offers the versatility to make your dream wine racking system into reality. Whether you are working with a very limited space, this wood adapts very well with its environment giving a more stylish and sophisticated look to the totality of your wine room.

Wine Cellar Innovations offers SFI (Sustainable Forestry Initiative) certified redwood for all our wine cellar and wine racking products. Ensuring that you have a responsible company that enables the continuation and “green factor” effect is important when considering your wood choice.   Additionally, FSC certified redwood is also available.

Redwood possesses interesting characteristics not found in other wood species. This includes resistance to shrinking and warping which is very commonly instituted with other wood varieties that makes it surprisingly easier to play with.

In addition, Redwood is more insect repellent in all-heartwood grades than other softwoods. With a high resistance to termites and decay, it is distinguished as a very useful type of wood most especially when customizing wine storage.

Plus, Redwood ages beautifully. It is known for its stunning color – deep reddish brown that darkens with age. It facades a darker red coloring within the first two or three months after the installation is complete.

And finally, Redwood has an open-cell structure and contains little or no pitch or resins. This enables redwood to absorb and retain all types of finishes very well. With this, you can try to do your personal stain choices whichever finish you decide. It is very well-known for its own stunning reddish look; you just have to enhance its natural beauty.

After reading all these, we hope you now have a very deep grasp on how great Redwood would be gracing your wine cellar. If you would like to know more about our other wood species available, freely browse through our website and discover more options. Once you have finally decided, give us a call and we would be very happy to assist you anytime.

Big Wine Dreams…Small Spaces?

October 13th, 2010

Wine storage solutions for small living spaces

So here’s the thing: You love wine, you drink and think about it often, and can’t stop buying a bottle or two EVERY week. You’re now thinking of starting a real collection rather than stashing those bottles on a rack in your kitchen, but alas,  you live in a SMALL apartment.

There’s hardly enough room for ALL your stuff, let alone enough empty space for a nice wine cellar or a wine refrigerator.  Your cramped space is disappointing, but hey, here’s the good news: lack of space doesn’t make collecting wine impossible!

So here are some wine storage recommendations for you:

Small Wine Racks

Small wine racks are an elegant way to display and store a few bottles of wine. We have a couple of small wine racks for you here at WCI. We can design a wine rack to fit your limited space, and you can choose from a variety of wood and stain options to prettify them!

A small wine rack is perfect for a table or counter, and they make an interesting conversation piece. Check out our Stackable 12 Bottle Wine Rack or the Pine Cube Wine Rack!

Wine Cabinets

There are a variety of wine cabinet sizes out there – find one that’s perfect for your unique storage situation!

Wine cabinets, just like their full-sized counterparts, help keep your wines from being adversely affected by light, vibrations and humidity fluctuations.  You don’t have to worry about protecting your investment, since these cabinets are equipped with high-tech humidity and temperature controls designed for wine storage.

 

Check out some of our wine cabinets. These whisper quiet cabinets make a great storage solution for your wines, and we can design them to fit perfectly in your designated space!

 

Wine Credenzas

Here’s another practical solution for the space-challenged: the wine credenza. It’s a long, low cabinet that is usually seen in a dining room.  Maybe you’ve seen some of these cabinets in luxurious woods with nice details. They’re usually placed alongside a wall in a room. We love their practicality – you can show off your collection AND can also be used as a table top for serving food, as a bar area, or as a place to display your fine china!

If you think wine credenzas are for you, check out our Franciscan Series, comprised of full-length glass doors framed by wood veneer. The combination of the tinted glass and wooden door frames provide a uniquely classic view of your wine collection!

So don’t be deterred from collecting just because you don’t have the space. Get creative and pick the wine storage solution that’s best for you!

Tech Tuesday Episode #5 – Wine Cellar on Lake Michigan

October 12th, 2010

Design, build and install custom wine cellars and wine cellar cooling units.

That’s what we do, and we love it.

We especially enjoy it when we install something HUGE, such as this one for a second home in Traverse City on Lake Michigan, installed September 2. When we say huge – we mean this wine cellar can house 6300 bottles!

What better way to feature your wine and showcase your style but build an awesome wine cellar? Big is truly beautiful in this case, and hey, with our designers and installation experts who are experienced in all aspects of cellar design, this wine cellar is definitely designed to WOW.

Have you seen last week’s Tech Tuesday? Our hands have been full with installation projects!

Where: Traverse City on Lake Michigan
Project #: 202358-2
When: September 2010
Wood: Platinum Series in All Heart Redwood
Maximum Storage Capacity:  6300 wine bottles

The client chose our top of the line Platinum Series Custom Wine Racks, and picked the wood of choice for fine wine cellars — All Heart Redwood. It is durable, naturally resistant to rot and mildew, shrinking and warping. The beauty of this wood is it improves over time!

This huge wine cellar features single and double deep storage wine racks. These come single or double deep with spacing for half bottles, wine, champagne, magnums and larger sizes. Form and function come together in these wine racks. For aesthetic benefit, every rail on each individual rack has a beveled front edge. Each rail also has an eased edge, which is its functional benefit. This ensures that when you are inserting a bottle into the rack, the label of your wine does not tear.

See those pretty solid diamond cube wine racks?  We just love how it breaks the monotony of rows and rows of individual wine racks and adds a flair to the entire cellar. We design the wine bottle storage capacity of each diamond cube with individual room ceiling heights and space available, because each diamond cube wine rack column or row is custom designed to fit your wine cellar dimensions. How cool is that?

Since this is a BIG wine cellar, there should of course be a place for those wood wine cases. We’ve incorporated single deep wood wine case storage on the bottom level, making them easy to put in and take out.

And what’s that on the left side? A custom-designed with a quarter round shelf cabinet! Quarter rounds are the perfect way to rack around outside corners and make the perfect endcap to any wall. Definitely perfect for displaying decanters, champagne buckets and wine accessories!

Individual wine bottle storage is the most popular style of custom wine racking, as you can see below. Why, we can imagine all those half bottles, wine, champagne, magnums and larger sizes filling up this magnificent cellar in no time! Notice that instead of utilizing a curved corner wine rack for corner transition, this cellar brings two wine racks together to form a 90 degree squared corner.

Finally, check out the open single depth vertical wine bottle display below for that overall dramatic effect. It’s functional and attractive, you would definitely want to show off your prized wines in them!

With genius use of space and materials, this massive wine cellar is surely a delight to its owner. We’re proud to have built this awesome wooden structure! Size doesn’t matter. Whether it’s a huge cellar or a small one that’s just perfect for you living space, we can customize a wine cellar for you.

For more information on our installation services and assembly, check out our installation page.

Cheap & Inexpensive Wine Racks: Why They’re A Good Buy!

October 11th, 2010

As wine lovers, there will always come a time when we have to decide between splurging on your wine selection or on your wine storage systems.

An expensive wine storage system may take away your budget for good wines.  On the other hand, expensive wines can cut into the budget for its storage!

Fortunately, there are cheap, yet reliable and inexpensive wine racks that allow you to have the best of both — great wines AND a good storage system.

Form and function rolled into one

Before you dismiss cheap wine racks as of inferior quality, know that they can provide for the same functions as its more expensive counterparts. Are all wine storage rack inexpensive? No, but we can guide you to some good options.

The materials used, design and the construction methods utilized for cheap wine racks are of good quality, too. You will find these racks to be functional and beautiful. I mean, have you seen the choices out there? We’ve seen some fabulous racks! From their looks, you wouldn’t think they were cheap at all!

When you buy budget-friendly wine racks, just make sure that it is placed in a cool and dark place to facilitate the aging process, or make use of a wine cellar cooling unit. There should be no sunlight exposure and no heat, with a little humidity of approximately 60 to 70 percent.

Your wine bottles can be placed in either a horizontal or a maximum of 15 degree angled position so that the wine stays in contact with the cork and keeps it from drying out and loosing it’s capacity to seal the bottle. This will help keep them ready to drink until you are ready.

Now let’s talk strength and capacity.

You’d want to consider both of these strongly since your wines will be stored in them for a long period of time. You want your rack to be strong enough and have enough space for proper storage. To find the perfect wine rack, or cheap wine cabinet, consider the number of bottles you currently have, and how many you usually buy in a week or month.

The general rule is, the more wines to be stored, the larger your wine rack should be.  This way, the total weight of your wine bottles can be evenly distributed over a wider area.

An inexpensive wine rack does not have a sky-high price tag, yet you are assured that it will do the job of keeping wine just as well. Check out some of our best wine racks and our favorite small wine racks.  We hope you find one that suits your budget and taste!

So don’t shoot down cheap wine racks as the uglier, inferior versions. Of course you will ultimately be judged for your impeccable taste in wines and the experience you give your guests when you serve them, but wouldn’t it be great to have an attractive wine rack to show off?

Keeping Your Wines Cool with Wine Cellar Cooling Units

October 10th, 2010

When did it get so hot?

The heat and humidity not only take a toll on our bodies – it can also take a big toll on our beloved wine collection.  Whether you have a few bottles or a few hundred, the heat can destroy them – and you wouldn’t want that to happen.

As you may already know, the ideal condition for storing wine is 55 degrees and between 55% and 75% relative humidity.  Storing wines in a regular fridge can be too cold, and storing them in wine rack in a room temperature area can be too warm. It seems like the lesser of these evils is to put it them a regular fridge, as it will just dramatically slow down the aging process. But after a long period of time, this can adversely affect your wines too.

If you often purchase expensive wines or are looking at keeping a large quantity of wines, then you should invest in some wine cooling systems for your long term storage. Rain or shine, we think it’s crucial that you know how to bring on a chill to protect your wines from spoiling.

Wine cooling storage options

Wine Cellar Cooling

Small wine air conditioning units are needed for your long term wine storage in your custom wine rooms. Most of these fridges are thermoelectric units, so they are very quiet and can go anywhere in your home. There are also bigger wine refrigeration units of course, that typically have a compressor and a front vent, just like the one in your kitchen. These bigger units can be freestanding, or you can build it into your cabinets.

Wine coolers work to preserve the true aroma and flavor of your wine. They come with the temperature control technology to help you can keep different wines at different temperatures. And we’ve got just the right stuff for you!

For your high end wine cellar, our WineZone Split Refrigeration system is built to last under the most demanding conditions.

If you need something smaller, check out our Breezaire refrigeration unit. They are self-contained — they do not require a HVAC technician for installation.

You can also go for WhisperKool – only one of the best wine refrigeration systems in the world!

Don’t let your wines battle with the heat.  Look into one some of our wine cellar cooling units.  We have a great selection at affordable prices that fit various styles and budgets.

Magnificent Metal Wine Racks, Anyone?

October 9th, 2010

Okay, so most of the people we know prefer wood wine racks over metal wine racks. Yes, we also think wood wine racks are “warmer” and more homey than metal wine racks, but the metal ones offer not only great looks and come in contemporary styles – they also provide great stability and longevity.

Metal Wine RacksWe love the character and sturdiness of metal wine racks. They are extremely decorative, and help you store your wine more aesthetically. Why, they make an attractive décor in your home or business!

Metal wine racks have two particular advantages over wooden wine racks:

  • your wine’s label is easy to see
  • they are more likely to fit in narrow spaces

Because they take up less space and are usually modular, metal wine racks are usually lighter (sometimes heavier depending on the design). We love how they can fit stylishly into more places. If you’re thinking of storing your wine in a closet, a narrow hallway, or under the stairs, metal wine racks are the perfect choice!

The thin frames that these racks are composed of allow for more storage and space, and since these types of wine racks are adjustable, you can size and position them to fit your needs! If your home is the modern contemporary or minimalist, metal wine racks with elegant clean lines or gracefully curvy designs would look great.

Price-wise, metal wine racks can run from under $50 to several hundreds of dollars, depending on size and quality of the metal. To get your money’s worth, maybe you can invest in a wine rack that doubles as storage for wine and accessories such as wine glasses, corkscrews, and the like. You’ll never run out of choices, because there’s a lot out there that come in simple, stylish to intricate designs.

Our unique custom metal wine rack styles

Find your ideal metal wine rack quickly and easily today. Browse our Metal Wine Racks collection which is composed of VintageView wine racks, which are prefect for tight and limited spaces, and Black Lattice Wine Racks also great for those small spaces.

Maybe you’ll fancy the VintageView Magnum Champagne Wine Racks or the Diamond Metal Lattice Wine Rack.

With the STACT wall mounted wine racks, you have aluminum bottle supports with a beautiful colored panel behind showing off color to match your home. Another option is the Echelon wave wine racks which have a simplicity in the creation that will make your wine storage look incredibly modern.

No matter what style of metal rack you choose, it’s surely a great investment. With its form and functionality, it’s definitely a great storage option for your wines!

Wine Cellar Roundup – The Friday Edition #3: Where Corkscrew Came From And More!

October 8th, 2010

It’s officially autumn and getting darker at night and chillier during the day. Except for this weekend when it’s going to be 87 degrees in Southern California. Earthquake weather, I’m telling you! Hopefully your house is getting spookier every day with Halloween decorations. I know we have a big job this weekend getting all tricked out.  At least it’s not Christmas decorations, right? On to the good stuff…

Cork or Screw? Ahh, the argument just keeps popping up on cork vs screw top but Don Baker from the Dayton, Ohio wine recommendations Biz Journal gives some great wine recommendations as well.

Speaking of corks, do you know where the corkscrew came from? Now you have an amazing opportunity to find out. Your welcome.

Coming from the ‘make up your mind, already!’ side of things… Can you drink during your pregnancy, or not?? I had a glass of wine the day before I realized I was pregnant and felt guilty for two months until I saw my baby on the ultrasound. My Mother however drank several times a week when I was in her tummy. I THINK I’m okay…

I seemed to be drawn to the controversy side of things this week. Actually, it’s every week but this is pretty good. Palate Press does a great back and forth commentary on ratings or NO ratings on wine. Frankly, I just want it to taste good! My view is I want all the information on it. Did Robert Parker give it a 95? Did Wine Enthusiast say it was terrible? What did YOU say about it? Just tell me everything and I’ll make my own decision.

Don’t be annoying when describing wine. Aren’t sure how to do that? Here are a few tips.

Looking for wood wine racks? Be sure to check out our sale this weekend.

Wine Cellar Flooring: 4 Great Options To Choose From

October 7th, 2010

What you’re stepping ON in your wine cellar is just as important as all the other elements of what you’re stepping into – wine racks, ceiling, insulation, walls, tables, etc.

There are several excellent choices for your wine cellar flooring in the market today, and what’s fun about the selection process is finding the one design that blends well with your shelving and racks to create a beautiful and lasting environment for your wine collection.

Here are Wine Cellar Innovations, you can choose from cork, vintage wine barrels, painted tiles, to mosaics for your wine flooring. Get to know each one to determine which one would make fabulous flooring for your wine cellar!

Cork Cleopatra FlooringCork flooring

For the eco-conscious, go for cork wine cellar flooring. Cork is a natural and durable material that is harvested with minimal impact on the environment, and like bamboo, it is a rapidly renewable resource.

We love cork flooring because it is gentle on the feet. It is an excellent thermal and acoustic insulator. What’s more, cork contains subherin, a natural insect repellent that will even keep termites away! You don’t need to worry about mold and mildew either, because cork flooring is usually treated with Microban, which helps it be mold and mildew resistant. It’s also treated with a moisture protection system to create a watertight seal and helps the cork wear longer.

Cork flooring is easy to maintain too. Regular sweeping or vacuuming, and an occasional cleaning with a hardwood product would do.

Vintage Wine Barrel flooring

Here’s an exciting wine flooring idea – using vintage wine barrel parts!

When you use vintage wine barrel flooring, you’ll get a truly unique design because no two pieces of a wine barrel are exactly alike! The outside portion of the barrel has distinct markings, so how’s that for a great piece of art?

Vintage Wine Barrel FlooringWhat’s great about using wine barrels is that all parts are used — including the tops and bottoms of each barrel. Because the aged barrels have the unique patina of the wine permanently infused into the wood, it adds an old world feel to any wine cellar!

Here at Wine Cellar Innovations, each reclaimed wood component is carefully inspected for quality, color, and structural integrity. A wine cellar floor from old wine barrels beautifully finished and sealed is durable and definitely timeless!

Painted Tile flooring

Tile is a wonderful material to use in your wine cellar, but we love them even more when they come with hand-painted designs!

Painted tiles can feature your favorite wine labels, pictures of vineyard scenes and other wine motifs designed around your specifications. Painted tile wine cellar flooring is a great option because it is also durable, can be easily washed, and can even retain their color even after scratching or chipping! Each piece of tile we create here is handled several times, as it is hand painted with a series of colored glazes. The glazes are truly baked into the tile for a lifetime of color and durability. Because each painted tile is scratch resistant, you can scrub it with cleaning agents commonly used on tile, and they will not affect the fired glaze. Indeed, painted tiles make a great attraction in your wine cellar!

Bottles Glasses Painted Tile Flooring

Mosaic flooring

How would you like a mosaic medallion or a signature piece for the center of your floor?

Mosaic wine room flooring features blend of antique fine china, stained glass and porcelain tiles. These materials are broken and fitted into a vineyard landscape, floral or grape motif, wine bottles or glasses, geometric design, or even a picture of people or animals. A protective glaze is then applied to seal the art work.

Strength and longevity are two main attributes of porcelain mosaic tile.  They are also water and bacteria resistant. Mosaic tiles may be applied to both walls and floors, and because they do are non- slippery, they are an excellent choice for areas that may get wet. With colorful designs to brighten up your wine cellar, the effects of mosaic flooring bring style and elegance to the home of your wines!

For how to get one of these floors in your wine cellar, please contact us for more details.

Found A Wine Management Software Yet?

October 6th, 2010

Wine Management of Wine BottlesIt doesn’t matter whether your wine collection is big or small. Wine cellar management software can help you get organized!

Yes, it can be daunting to remember every single wine bottle is, what vintages you have in your collection, and where they’re located! Without consistent, up to date information about quantity and location, finding a specific bottle can become increasingly difficult.

Fortunately, there are many wine inventory software programs out there that can help you manage your wine collection and create a perfect wine inventory system. These nifty wine cellar management software and wine cellar organization software programs allow you to:

  • create a database of wines you own – even those that you would like to own!
  • know exactly where bottles are stored
  • know the many brands and flavors of wine you have in stock
  • know which bottles have been used and which ones need to be re-stocked
  • map where each bottle is in your wine cellar
  • keep tasting notes
  • note wine auction information

Indeed, for the serious wine collector, a wine inventory management system helps keep your collection manageable and organized. If you’re new to wine collecting, know that keeping track of your wine inventory doesn’t have to be difficult! Tracking your inventory and its location may sound complicated, but wine management programs offer areas for you to keep those valuable tasting notes, market prices, winery information and so much more. We have even found some software that have portable pocket buying guides to help you find retail prices and ratings on thousands of wines! So, no, you obviously don’t need to have excellent memory to remember what’s in your wine racks!

Here are some programs to check out: Wine Cellar Tracker, VinCellar designed by Alder of Vinography blogWinebanq, and The Wine Curators.

You have many choices out there, so just go ahead and try a software program that works for you. Enjoy your wine, and take time to update your database by storing the bottle tags of those wines you have drunk. Speaking of bottle tags, to help you organize your wines, we recommend you use this cool wine accessory! They’re a must-have for every home wine cellar software novices and experts. Check out our wine bottle tags — they provide an excellent method for organizing and collating your fine wines!