Is The El Dorado Hills Weather Ruining Your Wine?
Updated: Sep 2
It’s not hard to find a great bottle of wine in El Dorado County. In an area famous for its wide selection of wineries and vineyards, the bigger challenge if you’re a wine enthusiast is where to keep all the wine you’ve purchased.
The El Dorado Hills weather makes the region ideal for grape growing can also pose a threat to the quality of the wine in the bottles you are storing.
The wrong storage environment can ruin a bottle of wine. To avoid this happening to you, it’s a good idea to understand how the weather affects wine storage and what steps you can take to prevent damage to your collection.
El Dorado Hills Weather
As is much of California, El Dorado Hills is a semi-arid climate. This means the winters are typically cold and wet. The summers are hot and dry.
The hottest period of the year is from early June to late September. Daily highs during this time range from the mid eighties to the mid nineties. Cloud cover is also at a minimum during this time, which means the direct sunlight intensifies the heat.
The weather in El Dorado Hills begins cooling off in mid-to-late October. Cloudier skies become more regular as the weather cools off as well.
Because the region is semi-arid, humidity is not a factor throughout the year. The perceived humidity level in El Dorado Hills does not vary significantly during the year, staying at effectively zero percent the entire time.
How Does Weather Affect Wine Storage?
While there are differing opinions as to the exact temperature that wine should be stored at, the generally accepted range is 55 - 60 degrees F. When wine is stored above this temperature range, it can lose antioxidants and color four times faster than wine stored in a climate-controlled environment.
The ideal humidity range for wine storage is 65 - 70%. There is a chance that storing wine in low (or zero) humidity environments over extended periods will dry out your corks. If this happens, air can leak through the cork and degrade your wine.
If you are storing your wine at room temperature–like in a kitchen cupboard or pantry closet –your wines are aging much faster than you realize. Many people also tend to keep wine in their garage. But unless your garage stays unusually cool during the summer, it is probably the worst place in your home to store wine.
There is some good news however. While the serving temperature of wines varies (slightly chilled for reds, cooler for whites) the storage temperature for all your wine can be the same. This means you don’t need separate storage environments for whites and reds.
Wine Storage Options
To ensure your wines don’t age too quickly because of warm weather, you have three general options for wine storage:
Buy a wine cooler
Build a wine cellar
Use professional wine storage
A wine cooler is a purpose-built standalone wine storage option. Pricing and sizes vary depending on how much wine you want to store. The two drawbacks of purchasing a wine cooler is the amount of space it takes up and the noise it makes. A decent wine cooler that’s designed for aging will be a little loud because it requires a condenser and a fan.
If you want to go all-out, and you have the resources, building your own wine cellar is an option. Keep in mind however, that a wine cellar should be built in the coolest, most humid area of your home. Building a cellar is a complex and expensive option. Because most homes in Northern California don’t have an underground level, finding adequate space may be difficult.
Professional wine storage is a great option for serious wine collectors with limited space at home. At GoldKey Storage, we provide individually locked and alarmed wine lockers that hold eight to twelve cases of your favorite vintages. Our lockers maintain strict temperature control of 55 - 60 F at all times. We will also receive any winery or wine club shipment on your behalf and place it directly in your private storage.
Whichever wine storage method you decide on, the most important thing is not to let the weather in El Dorado Hills get the best of your wine.