One of the most frequent questions we get asked about wine storage is whether it is possible or recommended to mature or store red and white wine together? This is where understanding the difference between wine storage (long term maturation) and wine service (pulling out a bottle at the ideal temperature) comes in handy.
The answer to this question of whether reds and whites can be stored together really boils down to one distinct and personal question, do you plan on using any part of the wine fridge for wine service (pulling bottles out at exact serving temperature). If the answer is yes, and you only have a single zone wine fridge, then no, you shouldn't store them together but if you plan to only use the wine fridge for long term maturation then yes, you can store red and white wine together because they are both meant to be matured at around 12°C.
Solutions for storing red and white wine together for long term maturation
As noted, wines mature, all wines, red, white and Champagne most happily at around 12°C. For long term maturation you need a wine cabinet. These are large units, holding between 100-300 bottles, usually with a carbon filter and a winter system, sometimes with a glass door, sometimes with a solid door, that are for the serious oenophile who has spent a serious amount of money on fine wine and wants to mature them in cellar like conditions.
Although bottles, even between the two colours, can come in different shapes and sizes, it can be the case that white for laying down come in Burgundy shaped bottles whilst reds can come in any variety of shapes with even just France having Bordeaux, Burgundy and Rhone shaped bottles.
Many of our clients choose to buy two wine cabinets and reverse the door on one unit so they open from the middle when side by side and use one unit for red wine and the other for white wine. They do this not only because it's easier to remember where your wine is, but also because, in order to fill the fridges most efficiently and get the maximum number of bottles into a unit, adding bottles of the same shape saves space.
Solutions for storing red and white wine together for service
If you want to store red and white wine together in one fridge but want to use the fridge for serving the wine at the ideal temperature then you need a dual zone wine cooler.
Dual zone wine coolers come in many sizes from 30+ bottles and around £500 all the way to 200+ bottles and £3000. They can be freestanding or built in to your kitchen, kept in your home or garage or outbuilding. Many of these units will have extras like carbon filters and winter systems so could also be used for partial storage if your wine habits changed.
Solutions for storing red and white wine together for partial service and partial storage
In this case you again need either a dual zone or a multi-zone wine cabinet but this time you do need to look out for a carbon filter for the long term maturation of your red or white wines. Many brands are made for partial service and partial storage, a really good example of this is the Artevino Multi-Zone Cabinets that have a small area of 12 bottles or so for service of reds and 12 for service of whites with the rest given over to storage. This is super-smart, as you can decide what bottles you may want to drink earlier in the week and move them to the service area while the rest of your wine happily matures an ideal solution for parties.
If you're still not quite sure which wine cooler, fridge or cabinet best suits your needs them contact us via live chat and we'd be happy to help you with a personalised solution.