A Wine Cellar This Christmas

Why not ask for a wine cellar this Christmas? I have a modest wine cellar in the basement cold room and I love it – maybe even obsess over it a little. It’s sad to think that many of my friends don’t have a wine cellar this Christmas – too sad to think about sometimes. Now is the time to start a cellar.

There are no rules to starting a cellar.  Just ask yourself, “What do I like to drink?”   I have almost half my cellar in Spanish wines –  my brother does live there – and a quarter of my cellar in Australian Shiraz.  That’s not really very balanced but it’s what I like to drink.

Now that I said there are no rules – here are the rules.

Rule 1 – If you don’t have French wine and Italian wine in your cellar then I think it best that you refer to it as “some bottles in my basement” because without these Old World classics your cellar is just a wannabe.

Rule 2 – It’s a good idea to replace a couple of obligatory bottles of Champagne – and you are obliged – with Cava from Spain and then spend the extra money on a Barolo, or a Chateauneuf du Pape.  Could somebody remind me why the Pope needed a second home? I’ll bet it was to because he got tired of drinking Chianti all the time and wanted some of the good French stuff.

Rule 3 – Even if you don’t usually drink white wine you really should have something white and French in your cellar – and I don’t mean a mime.  I would have a couple of Chablis on hand and pay the extra money for a Premier Cru.

Rule 4 – I guess this really should be a warning.  Once you start a cellar it is likely to grow in size. My friends Rob’s cellar of 500 bottles gives me cellar envy, except when I get a bottle from him as a gift.  Maybe rule 4 should be that it is a good idea to have friends with higher level of wine commitment than you have. It makes for great drinking.

Rule 5 – If you need to convince someone else in your house that starting a cellar is a good idea then consider using the term “investment” frequently in the conversation – just don’t let the conversation steer in the direction of the actual meaning of that word. Don’t let the facts get in the way of a strong argument.

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About Travis Oke

Wine writer / consultant View all posts by Travis Oke

3 responses to “A Wine Cellar This Christmas

  • Brad

    I love Rule/Warning #4, Rob is to you what you are to me. Keep investing my friend, keep investing.

  • Anne Douglas

    Love the mime line.

  • Geoff

    You have half your cellar in Spanish wines? I have my cellar in the ground. My wine I keep in a small room on the main floor — not as far to walk and no danger of tripping on the stairs and popping a cork prematurely.

    Good advice, Travis. And I would like to make friends with your friend, Rob 🙂

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