Luxury Trends: Home Wine Cellars

Luxury Trends: Home Wine Cellars

While growing our luxury leather wine carrier clientele, Beau Satchelle has had opportunities to interact with wine connoisseurs and avid collectors who continue to elevate how they show off their in-home wine cellar.  Unlike the wine cellars of the past, located in the expansive dark cool dungeon covered with dust and spider webs, today’s collectors demand their wines be front and center.     

While waiting in a lobby for an appointment a week ago, I admittedly became mesmerized by a real estate show on million-dollar listings  The agent was touring a couple’s Texas property and any woman desiring a walk-in closet would have been drooling over the wife’s 3000 square feet, 3 floors, stunning wardrobe closet (future blog, perhaps?).  What was just as impressive was the owners’ 1st-floor wine tasting room complete with an exceptionally designed refrigerated wine storage wall.  

The big business of wine collecting has advanced to the point of offering DIY hobbyists, a variety of cellar management software systems either by mobile or web apps. Or better yet, budget the hiring of a cellar management consulting firm to handle collection sourcing and acquisition, offering disaster assistance, and inventory expertise. 

Ardent collectors with thousands of bottles will invest in professional storage facilities or even a separate apartment for a massive inventory. Typically, collectors with basements will build a traditional underground cellar, but lately, wine cellars are an integral design element and luxurious add-on to a home. 

Whether storing wine under a staircase, a shelving unit in the kitchen, a basement renovation, or a part of the pre-construction of a new home with a dedicated cellar located in a prime display area.   When determining the perfect design for your home, wine design experts advise to consider factors:
  • Lifestyle (your intake of wine, buying temperament)
  • Perhaps, you the type of collector who plans to never open most of your bottles for your lifetime and instead be willed to a family, auctioned, or perhaps gifted to a country.  Or someone who invests for the pleasure of experiencing good wine on a regular basis.   
  • Have an expansion plan 5 to 10 years out 
  • And of course, your budget

An article in The Wine Spectator summarizes thoroughly the 4 collector categories in building or updating the perfect cellar:

1.        The Balanced Cellar – a mixture of vintages, prices and the ability to fulfill various occasions to pull a bottle for uncorking

2.       The Instant-Gratification Cellar – a collection of mature, fine wines that are ready to drink at a moment’s notice.  This cellar will have a mix of both peaked or vintages that are almost mature.

3.       The Tasting Cellar – mainly designed to build the owner’s knowledge about wine diversity and designed for comparative tastings of a certain vintage among one producer or multiple producers. 

4.       The Investment Cellar – this cellar is to accommodate highly regarded wines bought from reputable retailers or auction houses strictly for investment purposes and will need to be impeccably stored, have traceable provenance, and generally be offered in their original wooden cases. 

Based on your lifestyle and home design, a homeowner can select from:

  • The Nooks and Crannies Design – Perhaps you are a neophyte who began your journey experimenting with a few bottles of wine.  Now may be the time to construct a small cellar to keep your choice of wines on hand or begin building a small collection in a social area of your home.  Converting a small space into a wine cellar means maximizing every inch of a tiny space.  This could include:

o   A freestanding wine fridge or compressor wine cooler

o   Floating Display Wine Racks to handle from 20 – 120 bottles or Racking shelves designed with or without a cellar door, lighting, cooling unit, etc.

o   Repurposing space under the stairs, unused kitchen/dining room space,  a spare closet or alcove

o   For a larger space, the trend of designing a full or partial glass enclosure that showcases a collector’s wines from every angle – what is known as a “jewel box”

o   The other display trend is a “Mini Wall” used to craft a work of art of unused space to house wine

Material options can consist of wood for shelving, stackable wine racks or drawers or and/or metal in chrome or brass constructed as floating pins or rails for the wines to be positioned for maximum display.

Wine Room Cellars – These rooms would incorporate the categories of the instant gratification cellar and tasting cellar. It will usually accommodate a group of up to 10-12 people to enjoy tastings.   The design is to display an extensive collection being a focal point of the house for entertaining.  It will be a seamless room to the style of the house in addition to being functional. 

Designers will accommodate clients with refrigerated walls for control storage, yet keeping guests sitting in the room at a comfortable temperature

An addition of a spiral cellar originally developed in Europe can either be a showpiece itself or a hidden hideaway for a prized collection with entry-door options ranging from standard wood to retractable glass.

The Ultimate Wine Cellars – For the hobbyists who own massive collections (500 plus bottles) or are investors, a bespoke or customized company will be hired to design and handle every step of the process.

Builders have to assess elements of the space that may not be conducive to the success of maturing wine including types of lighting, compounds used to stain or finish wood, moisture barriers behind insulation, even the size of pieces that may be a challenge to fit in doors or transport down stairwells.   

Clients want to incorporate premium materials of wood, metals, and lighting.  The costs of building this cellar not only include the construction, but ongoing costs such as insurance, electricity use, and cooling-system replacement.

By The Way… 

Beau Satchelle’s Luxury Leather Wine Carriers

As you begin to venture out more to visit family and friends to share in your precious wine selections, there’s only one way to transport your precious cargo via a safe and beautiful package.   Why not own a leather carrier customized and handcrafted to fulfill your carrying needs? 

So whether you’ve pulled from your personal collection purchased bottles of award-winning, which may include a small lot vineyard and hand-crafted California winery Theopolis Vineyards.  Or want to gift your esteem host with a more international South American selection you picked up from your memorable trip to the Valle Central region in the country of Chile to the Neyen Vineyards.   Transporting your bottles in a Beau Satchelle hand-stitched leather carrier, either for a single bottle or multiple bottles will give you piece of mind and spark curious conversations about your taste in both wine and luxury leather.   -AJ

Share your thoughts on your own personal wine cellar in the comment section below or on Twitter!

Acknowledgment to the following sources for content on wine cellar designs:

Wine Spectator – How to Start a Cellar:  Buying Strategies

Wine Spectator – How to Create A Dream Cellar

VintageView – Wine Storage Design Company

Thank you to the photographers of the use of their lovely wine cellar pictures:

Gianni Scognamiglio – Wall wine Storage

Laurie Sickles – High-End Wine Tasting Room

Solomon Rodgers – Kitchen Wine Storage

Hanna SC – Hundreds of Bottles Stored in Wine Cellar

Robert Chaib – wine on wood racks

Solomon Rodgers – wine rack above refrigerator

Arno MItterbacher – red wine storage

S. Hermann  & F. Richter – Contemporary Wine Display

Richard Mcall – Backlighting for wall display

Mariamza  – Drop of wine on bottle

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