From darkness comes illumination
Putting together a wine collection requires a lot of knowledge and passion. But if you want to do things according to tradition, it can also require a lot of space.
For centuries, the best places to store wine have been somewhat unconventional. It has been kept in caves. In fact, when wine experts recommend a bottle of red wine is served at “room temperature,” they are not referring to the temperature in your kitchen. They are actually referring to the temperature of the wine caves found in the Bordeaux region of France – around 13° for those of you taking notes at the back. But the most common – and undoubtedly most iconic – place to keep a wine collection is a traditional wine cellar, where rows of dusty wine bottles rest peacefully in the dark.
A natural resting place
There are a number of factors that play a crucial part in how a wine is preserved and how it will eventually taste – from the temperature and humidity to the angle a bottle is stored at. Wine cellars naturally provide a perfect combination of all these factors. The lack of sunlight protects the wine from harmful UV rays, which can cause it to develop prematurely, while the lack of vibrations allows the sediment to settle. The humidity levels in a wine cellar are also ideal – around 80%, which is perfect for keeping the cork dry and preventing mould.
But what really makes a wine cellar an ideal place for storing wine is the way the temperature stays just right without too much variation. If the temperature is wrong, then the wine can be spoiled. High temperatures speed up the aging process, which decreases the complexity of the wine, while low temperatures slow the aging process. Higher and fluctuating temperatures are also to be avoided as this causes the wine to expand. This pushes the cork out, which can let air into the bottle and damage the wine.
Where technology meets tradition
But all this didn’t just happen overnight. Like wine itself, these storage conditions took centuries to perfect, using knowledge passed down through generations. Today, life moves at a much faster pace, and we have different priorities regarding both how we use our time and how we use our living space. Today, a cellar is more likely to be converted into an underground cinema or a gym rather than a place to store wine. While being able to devote your time to studying the history of wine is a luxury akin to owning a Screaming eagle Cabernet Sauvignon 1992.
Bringing an ancient tradition into the heart of your home
Modern living may not leave much room for wine cellars, but it doesn’t mean we can’t benefit from everything they’ve taught us. With the ASKO Wine Climate Cabinet, we wanted to pay tribute to the art of winemaking and use technology to bring the unique storage qualities of a traditional wine cellar into the heart of your home.
All of the features in the ASKO Wine Climate Cabinet are inspired by wine cellars – from ensuring the right temperature and positioning of the bottles to protecting the wine from vibrations and harmful UV light. We have taken everything we know about wine and encased it in a stylish, connected refrigeration cabinet that will take care of your wine without taking up valuable living space.
Centuries’ worth of knowledge in an instant
But the ASKO Wine Climate cabinet is not just about replicating the past. It’s about using the latest technology to make storing and caring for wine easier and more in-tune with the connected world we all now live in. The ASKO Wine Climate Cabinet comes with a companion app that allows you to easily catalogue and manage your entire collection and even control the cabinet remotely. The app is also connected to Vivino – the world’s largest online wine community. This gives you instant access to a vast database of 12,000,000 wines as well as priceless information on tasting, storing and serving, which in the past would have taken centuries to discover.
Raise a glass and enjoy life
Now, you don’t need a spacious cellar or an encyclopaedic knowledge of wine to get the most out of your collection. All you need is the right technology. This isn’t cheating or disrupting the past, it’s simply how you can care for and collect wine in a connected world.
When used properly, today’s technology doesn’t just keep old traditions alive. It makes them easier and more accessible so that more people can enjoy them than ever before. And that’s worth raising a glass to.