Like many so-called wine people, it recently came to my attention that my collection (a very, very modest one) had gotten out of hand. I don’t own all that much wine compared to some collectors, but enough age-worthy bottles had accumulated in my in-house cellar that I had completely lost track not only of what I had, but also where specific bottles were located within it.
So I decided that the time had come to follow my friend Scot “Zippy” Ziskind’s advice, take everything out, catalog it, and move any bottles that I wouldn’t be drinking in the next two years to an off-site, professional storage facility. Scot, as I’ve written about here before, is one of the country’s foremost experts in wine cellar design, cooling, and humidification, owner of ZipCo Environmental Services, Inc., and My Cellar, one of the region’s best wine storage facilities.
And now, after having gone through my precious bottles, and having reacquainted myself with what I had, cataloging everything in Cellar Tracker, and purging my poor overstuffed cellar, I’ve come to two important conclusions: First, I need to buy more wine; and second, I should have moved my most important bottles to the My Cellar warehouse a long time ago for guaranteed safe-keeping.
I bring this up because I’ve been hearing some real horror stories lately from friends who have had people over for dinner, had a bit too much to drink, and decided, in their impaired state, that they would pop the corks on bottles that were nowhere near ready. And while having trophy bottles on hand to show off is perfectly fine, it’s also dangerous unless you have some sort of fail-safe mechanism in place to protect yourself from your own worst impulses.
Trophy wines are nice to look at, but they’re even better to drink--when they’re ready.