Master Sommelier John Szabo presents a series of articles offering practical advice on building a wine cellar as a source of personal enjoyment and investment. This is Part 3.3, the last of three instalments focused on proper wine storage conditions.


See Part 1 and Part 2 of our three-part series on proper wine storage. Read on for Part 3. 


Intuitively, you would think that exposing wines to continual or even occasional vibrations (from fridge compressors, passing streetcars or subways, loud music, etc.) would have negative effects on wine — and you’d be right.

Nobody likes to be shaken up. Studies have shown that vibration can result in significant changes in the physio-chemical properties of wine, effectively accelerating its evolution and, as with heat, not favorably. The higher the rate or intensity of vibration, the more rapid the changes. Vibration has been shown to result in a decrease in tartaric and succinic acids, causing a reduction in esters, which in turn dulls flavours. Vibration also increases the amount of propanol isoamyl alcohol, which reduces aromatics and accentuating acetone notes (nail polish remover).

Another more obvious and visible effect of vibrations is the shaking up and re-suspension of the sediment that forms in most (red) wines over time. In any case, most old red wines should be stood upright (in a vibration-free area) for a day before serving to allow the sediment to settle, so you can decant off the clear wine and leave the sediment in the bottom of the bottle.


How Xpeditr Maintains Bottle Integrity 
The top tier auction houses have strict rules regarding the handling and shipping of fine wine, and Xpeditr is the shipper of choice for these houses.

Proper shipping techniques are crucial in order to avoid stressing (or ruining) wines through excessive vibration or environmental variations. Shipping fine wine via overnight courier is never a good idea, especially for older wines with softer or shrunken corks — the wine will slosh around and possibly breach the seal, resulting in leaks, an incursion of oxygen, or complete loss.

Xpeditr packs older wines upright in double corrugated boxes to reduce bottle shock. Specially modified temperature-controlled trucks are equipped with G Force Impact Monitors, which sense motion parameters (turning vectors, altitude, etc.) and breaking forces, giving drivers immediate feedback. The trucks are custom tuned for extra suspension and drivers are monitored and selected based on the care they take on the road.

The choice of route is also crucial. Routes are plotted to reduce rapid climbs or descents. Finally, Xpeditr uses its military contacts to get a heads up on extreme weather and storms, enabling our project planning veterans to schedule the safest route for your wine collection.


>> Stable conditions are important when shipping wine. Xpeditr’s temperature controlled vehicles ensure your valuable collection stays safe on its entire journey.



Given the amount you are likely to invest in your wine collection, securing it is essential. As mentioned in part one of this series, an average wine investor can expect their collection to grow to be worth more than $150,000 — or up to $1,000,000 US if you join the top third of collectors. There’s no sense having an optimized ageing environment if your wine is susceptible to loss or damage due to fire, theft or equipment failure. Over time, much of it will become irreplaceable. 

Professional storage facilities come with robust security and safety measures. In the next post I’ll look at some of the pros and cons of storing your collection with a third party. But, if you’re planning on storing your collection at home, here are some things to consider.

The greatest risks to home wine collections are probably fire and equipment failure. Private residences are not usually equipped with sprinkler or fire suppression systems, the kinds of systems found in professional storage facilities. If there is a fire in the vicinity of the cellar, damage is almost inevitable and total loss a possibility. I have a colleague who lost a lifetime’s worth of collected wine to a house fire — it was tragic for her to sift through the remains and taste bottle after bottle of heat or smoke-damaged wine. While your insurance may cover all or part of the value, irreplaceable old vintages are, well, irreplaceable. If your collection is valuable enough, some form of fire suppression system, at least in the environs of the wine cellar, should be considered. This might also bring down insurance premiums.

More common in residential wine collections is loss or damage due to equipment failure. Despite investing vast sums of money into a home-storage systems — even a relatively modest cellar will run upwards of $50,000 US — few go the last step to install redundancy into the system. If the cooling unit fails, or the power goes out, the temperature will begin to fluctuate within minutes and damage follows closely behind that. And without some kind of remote temperature/humidity monitoring system that sounds the alarm if the cellar environment goes sideways — common on many cellar management apps these days — failed compressors can go unnoticed for days or weeks. Imagine if it were to occur while you’re away on holiday, only to return to cooked or frozen wines. I know a collector who’s failed cooling system went undetected for at least a month, and a large part of his collection was ruined (I was called in as an expert witness in his claim to the insurer). Having a backup power generator will put your mind at ease.

As for other acts of God like tornadoes, hurricanes and earthquakes, your only real protection is proper construction in the first place, and a tight insurance policy. In the case of floods, while water won’t necessarily damage the wine itself (unless the water happens to be hot), but it could cause breakage, and the water will strip off labels. Not only does this make resale virtually impossible, but you might also find yourself doing a lot of blind tasting — drinking wines whose identity and origins you can only guess at — as a friend discovered when he ran out of room in his cellar and started storing bottles in his swimming pool during a hot summer.


>> Read more about Xpeditr’s capabilities for emergency evacuation and protection of fine wine collections during catastrophes such as floods, earthquakes and tornadoes.

Finally, Wine collectors routinely rely on home security systems that are likely ineffective against professional thieves. Restaurants, too, often overlook proper security for their wine collections —read about a meticulously planned fine wine heist from a Michelin-starred Spanish restaurant. Fortunately, most thieves won’t be interested in lugging heavy, breakable bottles of wine out of a house, nor know which bottles are worth taking in first place. Thievery is more likely to occur from inside jobs: relatives, friends, children, or spouses drinking precious bottles before their time. A lockable door and proper cellar organization — so it’s clear which wines shouldn’t be touched — will go a long way to protecting your most valuable assets.

Check it out Part One and Part Two in the series.



Master Sommelier John Szabo presents a series of articles offering practical advice on building a wine cellar as a source of personal enjoyment and investment. This is Part 3.2, consisting of three instalments focused on proper wine storage conditions.

Stable storage conditions are imperative to ensure your wines will age with dignity and not lose liquid due to evaporation.

See Part 1 of Proper Wine Storage, which deals with the importance of temperature in maintaining a healthy wine collection.  


Temperature Stability

Perhaps even more important than hitting a perfect 52–58°F is maintaining a constant and stable temperature. The reason again is simple science: as liquids warm, they expand, putting pressure on the cork. A protruding cork is a telltale sign that a bottle of wine was over-heated at some point, as is wine leakage around the capsule. The air (and evaporated wine) in the headspace of a bottle is also pushed out through the permeable cork. When the liquid cools, it contracts, creating a vacuum in the headspace, and air is sucked in through the cork to rebalance. Regular fluctuations cause fresh air (oxygen) to be repeatedly drawn into the bottle, which then reacts with, and damages (oxidizes) the wine. This is bad. You’ll have noticed bottles with low fill levels (ullage) — this is normal after 40 or 50 years or more even in a proper cellar as wine naturally evaporates — but it’s another sign of poor storage in younger bottles, indicating that wine has been prematurely forced out and replaced with air.

Temperature fluctuations should thus be minimized in both magnitude and frequency at all costs. A range of about 5°F would be an acceptable level of fluctuation, say between winter and summer — even better if it happens very gradually. But a fluctuation of just a degree or two can be very damaging if it occurs daily or weekly. It would be preferable to store wine at a slightly higher than recommended but stable temperature than at a cooler but regularly fluctuating temperature range.

A proper cellar should include a specialized max-min thermometer to monitor temperature fluctuations. Be sure to use one with a liquid probe and keep it in a water-filled bottle – it’s the liquid temperature (the wine) that matters, not the ambient air temperature (here’s a fancy, Bluetooth enabled example). Thanks to thermal mass — liquid takes longer to warm than air, for one, and the insulating effect of glass — a wine’s temperature will change much more gradually than the surrounding air. This means that a short spell of warmer ambient temperatures, like when you open the cellar door, is not a concern.

>> Stable conditions are important when shipping wine. Xpeditr’s temperature controlled vehicles ensure your valuable collection stays safe on its entire journey.



Assuming that you have some, or all of the wines in your collection under cork, relative humidity levels should range between 60 and 80 percent. This will maximize the lifespan of the cork, keeping it moist, elastic, intact and functioning, and reduce premature oxidation. This is the reason it’s recommended to store cork-closed wines on their side, so the wine stays in contact with the cork and keeps it moist. But corks will still dry out even in bottles that are laying down. The top of the cork is exposed to the air, and if humidity is too low, it will begin to shrink and crack as it dries, allowing air to seep in. Humidity naturally fluctuates between seasons, higher in summer and lower in winter, so some form of humidity moderation in the cellar is need in most climates. And while high humidity (80% and above) won’t cause any damage to corks, it will allow mold and mildews to flourish, potentially ruining labels or even causing a hazardous environment.



Considering the inevitable ingress of ambient air into wine over time (hopefully minimized as much as possible, as noted above), wine logically needs to be kept in an odour-free environment, lest those odorous molecules end up in your wine. Obvious things to avoid are any strong-smelling chemicals, open paint cans, solvents, etc. It’s also preferable to store your perishable food products elsewhere, like potatoes, onions, garlic, root vegetables, dried mushrooms, and the like. Brief exposure is not a concern — it would take many months/years to taint a wine, but these are things best kept separate from your wine cellar.



Light damages wine, so bottles should be kept in a dark environment. The phenomenon called light strike occurs when a wine is exposed to too much UV light, like sunlight. Wines in clear glass bottles are especially susceptible, but although dark green or brown glass absorbs most UV light, even a small amount can react with certain sulfur-containing amino acids in wine to form undesirable, smelly sulfur compounds (i.e., smells like onion, garlic, cabbage). Light can also react with tartaric acid in wine to form hydrogen peroxide, which in turn rapidly oxidizes colour pigments, turning white wines yellow and red wines brown. These effects are irreversible. Low level lighting will not damage wines.

To be continued…

Check it out Part One and Part Two in the series.

>>  Temperature and humidity issues can wreak havoc on your wine collection? Our team has saved many home cellars and transformed them back into stable wine environment. Get in touch to set up a consultation.


Part 3: Proper Wine Storage (1 of 3)

Master Sommelier John Szabo presents a series of articles offering practical advice on building a wine cellar as a source of personal enjoyment and investment. This is Part 3, which will consist of three instalments.

Wine bottles in temperature controlled storage.
Wine is a complex and fragile mix of compounds that must be protected from the elements. (Courtesy CellArt)

In parts one and two of this series I covered how to create your own ideal cellar profile, how to establish a logical buying strategy, and how to calculate the storage space you’ll need. In this (and future) post I’ll cover the optimal conditions you should aim for in your cellar.

Firstly, consider “cellaring” wine to be any period longer than 3–4 months. Assuming no extremes in the storage conditions — away from direct sunlight, between of 40°F and 65°F with minimal fluctuation, and relative humidity greater than 50 percent) — the vast majority wines won’t change that much, for better or for worse, in that time frame. And, so, specialized storage is not an issue. Often a basement will do. But any longer than that and you start to run risks.

It’s common knowledge that fine wine must be stored under strictly controlled conditions in order to mature favorably, and hopefully increase in value along the way. Cellaring wine for five, ten or even 50 years is necessary for some wines to reach their full potential. And since the negative consequences of sub-optimal conditions is magnified over time, proper storage is essential.


Storing and Aging Fine Wines

For ageing fine wine mid- or long-term, there are seven critical elements to consider:

  • temperature
  • temperature stability
  • humidity
  • ventilation
  • darkness
  • vibrations
  • security


Respecting the best practices for each of these elements will ensure that a wine will reach its full potential and retain or gain its maximum value.


The Importance of Temperature

Wine is a complex and fragile mix of compounds. During ageing, a series of chemical reactions occurs between these compounds in the presence of minute quantities of oxygen that might have been present at bottling, or that have entered through the cork or capsule over time (yes, even screwcaps allow some oxygen in). Basic chemistry dictates that raising the temperature of a chemical reaction results in a faster reaction rate. Particles move faster and with greater force and energy, resulting in more collisions with one another and the formation of new compounds. This is generally a good thing, creating new compounds that result in a more complex wine with smoother texture. It’s the reason we age wines in the first place.  

On the contrary, lowering the temperature slows the rate of reactions (less energetic, slower moving particles), and a wine takes longer to develop those sought-after, complex compounds.   Centuries of experience has established that the optimum temperature for wine storage is thus between about 52°F to 58°F. Wine hardly ages at all if stored below about 40°F. Above 78°F, an age worthy wine may be past prime (oxidized, cooked) in a matter of months.


>> Protect your collection from detrimental conditions! Xpeditr’s temperature controlled vehicles ensure your valuable collection is safe on its journey, nationally and internationally.


Temperature Variation

It’s tempting to think that storing wine at a higher temperature will simply shave off years of cellaring to reach prime maturity. Sadly, it doesn’t work like that. A bottle stored at a higher temperature than recommended will always be inferior and develop less desirable flavours compared to one stored to maturity at the correct (lower) temperature. Although chemical reactions accelerate with rising temperature, they accelerate at different rates. High temperatures, for example, cause polyphenols (mainly tannin and colour pigments) to precipitate at a faster rate than sugars and acids are reacting to form new compounds, resulting in wine that looks old but tastes undeveloped. High temperatures also cause premature loss of desirable fruity and floral aromas, through rapid ester and glycoside hydrolysis, if you must know, resulting in dull aromatics.

Very low temperatures, on the other hand, will simply slow down the ageing process without necessarily damaging the wine (as long as it stays above freezing). However, an associated concern is the potential damage caused by the typically low humidity levels in colder environments (cold air can’t hold as much moisture as warm air). Corks are more likely to dry out and allow excessive oxygen into the wine. Incidentally, this is why long-term storage in a refrigerator is a bad idea — humidity is always too low, though note that this not a problem for wines under screw cap, crown cap, glass top, or any other inert closure.

To be continued…

Check it out Part One and Part Two in the series.

>> Are you experiencing temperature or humidity issues in your cellar? Our team of experts have saved many home cellars and transformed them back into stable wine environment. Get in touch to set up a consultation.


Part 2: Formulating a Buying Strategy

Master Sommelier John Szabo presents a series of articles offering practical advice on building a wine cellar as a source of personal enjoyment and investment. This is number two of six parts.

Wine cellar.
Assuming an enjoyment window of 30 years, a collector will go through about 5,000 bottles of wine in a lifetime. (Courtesy CellArt)

In part one of this series, I shared some statistics on the average size and value of a wine collection intended for investment, and I outlined a simple way of creating a personal “cellar profile,” which will drive your buying strategy for a collection designed for enjoyment rather than investment. Now let’s get into formulating a logical buying strategy and calculate how much wine to buy.

Using the sample collector profile from part one, my starting point would be to put together a buying strategy that reflects consumption patterns.

Here is the profile I referenced in part one:

Annual consumption: 150–200 bottles, mostly 750 ml
10% sparkling, mainly champagne
20% white, mostly old world, especially white Burgundy.
70% red, mainly French and Italian, Burgundy, Bordeaux, Rhône, Barolo, Brunello

In this case, the consumption pattern indicates that there should always be at least 150 to 200 wines in the cellar that are at “prime drinking” each year, in the ratio of the preferred style categories established.

For our collector, that means about 18 bottles of champagne, three cases (12s) of white, and about a dozen cases of red divided among the collector’s preferred wines choices. I’d also include a few “discovery” wines to add breadth and interest to the collection — as much as we all love to drink great Burgundy or Bordeaux, wine lovers also enjoy finding and sharing new gems — as well as lots of diversity within those favourite categories (different producers, styles, vintages) to keep your drinking life interesting and make sure there’s a suitable wine in the cellar no matter what’s for dinner. And there should be a range of prices within each category, as, apparently, not every night calls for Pétrus and DRC. You’ll need appropriate wines on hand when your beer-drinking neighbour or cocktailing in-laws come to dinner.


Starting the Collection

Establishing a budget up front is smart practice. Wine collecting can easily get out of hand — not just in quantity but in value as well. I’ve seen marriages dissolve. In our case, let’s assume a pre-established budget of $50,000 a year for three years to get things started.

To get the collection rolling in year one, you’ll dedicate a little more of the budget to wines that are drinking well now: early maturing, current-consumption wines, and some older wines at prime purchased from sources like auctions, specialty shops with back vintages, or winery direct. Be sure to also reserve a part of the annual budget to invest into wines that will benefit from longer term ageing — to start to build out the “back end” of your collection for later-life enjoyment.

As the collection grows over time, more money can be shifted into long-term wines while “topping up” the drinkables, until you reach the point where you’ll have a lifetime supply of mature wines to draw on each year (assuming an average human lifespan), but not more than you can reasonably drink (assuming you intend to enjoy your collection personally and not bequeath it — that’s another story).

So, in our example, assuming an enjoyment window of 30 years, the collector will go through about 5,000 bottles of wine in a lifetime: 150 bottles x 30 years, with a safety buffer — it’s better to err on the slightly higher side in case you defy statistics. Running out of good wine is no fun.


Buying in the First Three Years

Purchases in the first year would likely total around 500 bottles (average $100/bottle), of which about one-third will be “ready to drink,” one-third a mix of wines that will benefit from mid-term ageing (three to eight years), and one-third meant for long-term cellaring 10 to 20+ years.

Purchases over the next two years follow a similar pattern, until you have a cellar of about 1,000 bottles (1,500 bottles minus what you’ve consumed this three-year period). Purchases can now slow to about 150 to 175 bottles a year (the average yearly consumption) for the next 20 or so years to keep you in good drinking shape to the sweet end. But keep in mind that consumption dependably drops with age. Three or four bottles per week when you’re in your 40s will eventually drop to one or two in the golden years, reducing your overall needs, so consider tapering off your buying to reflect your drinking habits.


How Big is Your Cellar?

Now you know that you need a cellar that can hold at least a thousand bottles, lying on their side. I’d suggest including a buffer zone for another couple of hundred. I’ve never met a collector who hasn’t eventually acquired more wine than they have cellar space for. Those irresistible buys come around all too frequently. But any more than that and you’ll have more wine than you need. Though that’s not the worst problem to have.

You’ll need a minimum of 100 square feet with nine-foot ceilings to store 1,200 bottles comfortably in a functional storage space, though, of course, cellar designs vary immensely. In the next post I’ll cover proper storage conditions and functional versus artistic designs.


Cellar Management

Needless to say, keeping an up-to-date cellar inventory is critical in order to manage your collection. This becomes even more necessary if you store wine in multiple locations (home, cottage, yacht, chalet, off-site warehouse, etc.). Especially useful are apps that allow you to create multiple cellar locations and input “drinking window” dates, allowing you to search your collection for all the wines in their prime, or alert you to those nearing the end of their expected lifespan. A function that tells you exactly where a particular bottle is in a large cellar will also save you time and frustration hunting around for it, disturbing many bottles along the way. Large collections invariably get messy as bottles are taken out and new ones added, and it’s inadvisable to keep constantly shuffling wines around to keep like with like, unnecessarily disturbing bottles and risking breaking some on the way. More handling equals more risk, more danger.

>> Need some help managing your cellar? Xpeditr to the rescue… We can do a thorough inventory and make recommendations to protect and enhance your precious collection.  

Another all-too-common misstep is failing to keep the cellar inventory up to date and accurate. It’s easy to grab a bottle in the middle of dinner and forget to deplete it from your inventory the next day. All systems are only as good as their users. Fortunately, there are systems available that can do the work for you quasi automatically, such as bar codes or RFID tags and a scanner right at the cellar door. All you need do is swipe the bottle as you remove it from the cellar, or swipe it in. The downside is that there’s additional work to print and affix the barcodes/RFID tags to the bottles when purchased (some wines will have usable barcodes already). But considering the amount you’re investing, it’s worth the effort. And despite your best efforts, count on doing (or hiring someone to do) a reconciliation of your inventory from time to time.

There are some good apps to help you out with this, notably CellarTracker and InVintory, which I use with my clients.


Next Up: Proper Wine Storage

Did you miss Part One? Check it out here

1: Calculating Your Needs

Master Sommelier John Szabo presents a series of articles offering practical advice on building a wine cellar as a source of personal enjoyment and investment. One of six parts.

This is a wine cellar
Wine collectors should consider carefully how much wine they need.  (Courtesy CellArt)

Collecting wine can be both enjoyable and profitable. There are, of course, more sensible and thoughtful ways to go about it in order to maximize that pleasure and/or profit. It’s not just about buying more wine than you could reasonably consume over a few months — but that’s how it starts.

Over the next few posts I’ll share are the things to consider when the wine bug hits you, covering how to calculate how much wine you should buy, establishing a buying strategy, proper cellaring conditions to ensure optimal development, buying wine as an investment, home cellars vs. wine fridges vs. professional storage warehouses, and other helpful tips along the way.

Part One: Calculating Your Needs

First, and crucially, it’s important to consider how much wine you should be purchasing. I’m referring to the number of bottles more than the total value — that number is up to each individual collector. The biggest misstep I see collectors make is buying too much wine, some of which invariably slips past its best-before date before you get to it. It’s like having a fridge full of rotting vegetables. A shame for the wine, and money down the drain.

To give you some perspective on what you’re getting into, especially if you are planning to collect as an investment, consider a recent survey of 232 international collectors from 36 countries published by Liv-ex, a UK-based company that tracks fine wine data. According to this survey, the average collection of wine partly or entirely for investment purposes contains 2,631 bottles worth around $650,000 US.

Nearly half of those surveyed owned between 100 and 1,000 bottles, and more than a quarter owned from 1,000 to 5,000 bottles. A small percentage own over 10,000 bottles, while only 13 percent own fewer than 100 bottles. So, once you’re in, you’re statistically likely to own more than 100 bottles. And most likely to accumulate more than 1,000 bottles if you intend for your collection to be a genuine investment with risks spread over many “asset classes,” that is, different wines.

In terms of value, you can expect your collection to grow to be worth more than $150,000; or more than $1 million if you join the top third. Thus, the stakes are high, making a strategy critical to success.


>> Protect your collection: Xpeditr’s temperature controlled vehicles are designed for national and international shipping, ensuring your valuable collection is safe on its journey. 


Collecting for Pleasure
Assuming you are building a collection principally geared for enjoyment, what and how much you buy should logically depend on how much you consume, and what you like to drink. And again, over-buying is wasteful. I’d rather buy fewer cases of higher end wine instead of heaps of less expensive wine that probably won’t last as long. Remember: buying wine can be addictive.

Calculate Your Consumption
Start by roughly calculating the number of bottles consumed in your household in a year (I’m not your doctor, you can be honest). Start with the average number of bottles per week, and then pad that number to account for festive periods when consumption is higher, and consider annual parties, anniversaries, gifting and anything else that adds to that number. Don’t include wines you drink at restaurants or at a friend’s (unless you’re bringing the wine).


>> Inventory services: Xpeditr’s team includes professional sommeliers who can help you catalog your wine collection.

Style Considerations
Then, reflect on what styles of wine you tend to drink. Do you like to start a meal with champagne or sparkling wine? Do you go straight to red, or enjoy a glass of crisp white beforehand? How often do you really drink port or sweet wine?

Lastly, give some consideration to bottle formats. Most experts agree that magnums (1,500 ml) are the ideal size for long-term ageing. Formats larger than this will age even more slowly. These can be impressive sights; nothing says “festive” like pulling out a three- or six-liter bottle. The question is, how often do these festive occasions come around? I find that I have few opportunities to open big bottles. Even with large gatherings, I prefer to share more standard 750 ml bottles and serve guests smaller glasses of a greater number of wines over the course of an evening as opposed to two or three glasses of the same wine. Wine, for me, is all about discovery and diversity. But I know many collectors who swear by large format bottles and have no shortage of occasions to pull them out. How about you? Don’t forget you’ll have to allow for additional storage space for these in the cellar.

And a note on half (375 ml) bottles: These are great for dinners for two (or one), but wines in small bottles age more rapidly so are not suited to long-term cellaring.

These are some of the basic questions I ask my private clients before putting together a collecting strategy, tied naturally to the more specific types and origins of their preferred wines.

Here’s what a basic profile might look like:

Annual consumption: 150–200 bottles, mostly 750 ml
10% sparkling, mainly champagne
20% white, mostly old world, especially white Burgundy.
70% red, mainly French and Italian, Burgundy, Bordeaux, Rhône, Barolo, Brunello

Take a moment to create your personal profile.

Next Up…
Part 2: Formulating a Buying Strategy

One big bottle saved from peril.

Extracting 1500 bottles of fine wine from the ravages of a hurricane is an intense operation requiring precision, expertise, quick thinking and military-style execution — and it’s just what the Xpeditr ream pulled off last month as Hurricane Ian bore down on the coast of Naples, Florida.

Carrying winds of 155 mph, 15-foot storm surges and 30 inches of rain, Ian blasted the coast on Wednesday, Sept. 28, causing panic and widespread destruction.

When power went out Friday night, Xpeditr received a distress call from a resident. A high-value collection of fine wines was put into immediate peril. With no power for the cooling units, this collection would be irreversibly compromised.

It was Superstorm Sandy in 2012 that inspired the Xpeditr Emergency Response Team to put in place the procedures and resources they would need when — inevitably — a future disaster would occur.

“Trouble never sends a warning,” says Xpeditr CEO Adam Gungle.

The Xpeditr team now maintains a supply of all materials that might be needed in an emergency situation, such as packing materials and boxes, generators, battery power and fuel.

Read: 5 emergency tips to prepare for the next natural disaster

After receiving the call on Friday night, the entire team went into emergency mode. The Tampa crew was briefed that same night and began preparing for the extraction operation, which would begin early Saturday morning.


The crew faced challenges navigating flooded roads and detours as local residents were fleeing the area. An added challenge: diesel fuel was almost unobtainable. But the team was prepared. Valuable time was lost merely accessing the site, which they did not reach until just before nightfall. They lit up the condo’s wine storage area with emergency lighting and backup power — and they set to work. That night, they packed up half the collection. They moved the rest to a nearby hotel to finish the rest of the packing Sunday morning. By early afternoon, all 1500 bottles were secure in Xpeditr’s refrigerator controlled truck, resting at their ideal storage temperature of  55°F. This included several over-sized bottles, as well.

The wine was transferred to the warehouse in Tampa, where the team stacked and wrapped the wine onto three pallets for secure long-term storage. The client was informed — and relieved to hear — that the collection was safe and secure.

Fine wine on a shelf. Emergency preparedness is just one of the vital services that Xpeditr provides its clients. In the fall of 2017, when Hurricane Irma savaged Florida and Louisiana, Xpeditr CEO Adam Gungle told the Reuters news service: “The wrath of a hurricane can ruin delicate pieces of liquid history. Hurricanes Andrew, Katrina and Sandy ruined tens of millions of dollars worth of fine wine.” As he noted, some of these wines made it through World War Two.

Read: Be prepared this hurricane season

With hurricanes and threats from other natural disasters, it’s a matter of “when” and not “if” — especially in high-risk locations. The Xpeditr blog has advice for clients on how to prepare for such disasters, including:

Be proactive: Ensure you have essential and emergency items and equipment, including flashlights, waterproof extension cords, and at least one portable generator.

Take inventory: A thorough, user-friendly catalogue is vital, and must be updated regularly and kept in the cloud. (This is a service we can provide.)

Insure your collection: Make sure your entire wine collection is covered, as this is not always the case with general policies. Xpeditr wine insurance offers extended coverage that addresses the unique forms of damage a wine collection can face during storage and transportation.

Consider an off-site solution: If a disaster is imminent, the safest option may be to relocate your collection away from the path of destruction.

The Xpeditr team is ready to help you protect and preserve your wine collection. Contact us to arrange a consultation — we’re happy to answer any questions about your wine storage or transportation needs.



Plane Exporting Fine Wine From Hong Kong


The exodus from Hong Kong has turned up the pressure on shipping companies moving goods from the city to another country. The issues are particularly acute when it comes to shipping alcohol and fine wine, and anyone attempting to export a collection of premium or collectible wine from Hong Kong to an international destination will discover numerous barriers.


Why Xpeditr is the right wine mover for your collection

Wine has become a prosperous commodity for investors and wine connoisseurs. In fact, the market size is projected to reach 444.93 billion by 2027.

But starting a wine collection is not as easy as it may sound. A wine collection requires a lot of experience and accurate transportation to and from cellars. Thankfully, an experienced wine mover like Xpeditr can help you safely ship and store your best wines. Keep reading to learn more about our wine moving services. (more…)

Pouring red wine into glass

It’s projected that by 2022, the volume of wine sold will reach 281 million cases, which is worth almost $33 billion. If you were considering getting into wine collecting, then there’s never been a better time.
However, as many connoisseurs know, the smallest thing can affect a wine bottle and its contents. This makes shipping and transportation of the utmost importance.
Thankfully, Xpeditr is here to help.
Why should you choose Xpeditr as your wine shipping and transportation company? Here are 7 good reasons. (more…)

Full Wine Glasses

Xpeditr Sommeliers are trained and experienced wine stewards trusted by clients around the world who use My Private Sommelier Services. With hundreds of hours dedicated to constructing personalized wine menus and pairings, Xpeditr Sommeliers have compiled a list of tips to help wine lovers tease their palates and take their wining experience to an entirely new level. (more…)

Sommelier pouring wine

Xpeditr My Sommelier Services Exceed Expectations!


My Private Sommelier Services are second to none and offer a unique opportunity for wine lovers and connoisseurs to have a trained and experienced Sommelier in their back pocket. (more…)

secure wine storage


When disaster strikes you want to ensure that your valuables are safe and secure, and that includes your wine collection! As wine connoisseurs know, even the slightest changes in humidity, temperature and stability can permanently damage a precious bouquet.


Proper wine transportation and storage are essential to preserving the integrity of wine bottles year-round. But, during hurricane season there are additional challenges that present themselves; power loss and flooding can damage a wine cellar and collection within a matter of hours. (more…)

wine storage facility

Hurricane season is here and already proving itself a formidable force. With 9 to 15 significant storms predicted this year by the US Climate Prediction Center, serious damage could be in the forecast. For wine connoisseurs with collections of value, safety and security are top-of-mind. (more…)

Xpeditr wine transportation


Technology Underwriting Greater Good (TUGG), a non-profit arm of Boston’s tech community hosted their 13th annual TUGG Wine and Tequila Party on May 23, 2019, and Xpeditr was honoured to manage all wine shipping needs for the event.

TUGG was founded in 2009 with two main objectives in mind; to bring together Boston’s best entrepreneurs, VCs and technologists as a community, and leverage this group to the source, identify and fund Boston’s best social entrepreneurial ventures. TUGG finds innovative non-profits tackling big, hard problems in their communities and they write the first check to make their programming a reality. (more…)

Prohibition Era Rules


Many Prohibition-era regulations codified in 1935 to address the ills that lead to the all-out ban on alcohol production, importation, transportation, and sale are still in place today!

Specifically, Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TBB) trade practice regulations have not been updated to reflect today’s modern marketplace.


The intent of many TTB policies in the 1930s was to address competition within a two or three-tier system where those in upper tiers (wholesalers, distributors and retailers) were prevented from dominating lower tiers (suppliers), and threatening their independence. But, in today’s modern marketplace, are the original goals of TTB provisions actually achieved through TTB’s current investigation initiatives?


Xpeditr Inc. in the Media

ELIZABETH, N.J. (PRWEB) MARCH 19, 2019 – Transportation and wine storage experts, Xpeditr Inc. understands wine at a molecular level, and the necessity for a stable environment to ensure optimal conditions for aging. Even the smallest changes in the elements; temperature changes, humidity variances, friction and agitation can quickly damage a fine wine bottle, or entire collection.

Many wine lovers and aficionados have at-home wine storage facilities, whether it’s a wine fridge or entire wine cellar, they take due care in regulating humidity and temperature levels, ensuring conditions are optimal for wines to mature and age gracefully.



Unlike every other species on earth, human beings exist within a very narrow comfort zone, with most of our time spent inside climate-controlled dwellings. If you quizzed the average person about their ideal “room temperature” you’d find a minimal delta on either side of 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Maintaining this comfort zone temperature requires power. (more…)

Xpeditr Inc. in the Media

ELIZABETH, N.J. (PRWEB) NOVEMBER 27, 2018 – Fine wines are living, breathing organic treasures that are sensitive to even the smallest changes in the elements; temperature changes, humidity variances, friction and agitation can quickly damage a bottle and its contents. Xpeditr wine insurance provides extended coverage to specifically address the different types of damage a wine bottle or wine collection might experience due to the elements, natural disasters, power outages, and more.

professional wine movers support charities

The Xpeditr Inc. team steps up to the plate to help charities around the world transport and deliver fine wines for auction! Charity auctions are a vital component in raising funds to support great community initiatives and global health. Fine wines always generate interest and investment. (more…)

wine storage


With hurricane season upon us, there is no better time to make sure that you are prepared in the event of a natural disaster or emergency. Some advanced planning will go a long way in ensuring you, your family, home and valuables are safe and secure! (more…)

Xpeditr Inc. in the Media

ELIZABETH, N.J. (PRWEB) SEPTEMBER 19, 2018 – XERT, the Xpeditr Emergency Response Team, is ready to help wine collectors protect and preserve their liquid treasures from natural disasters. Established in 2012 following the devastation of hurricane Sandy, the team is made up of 20 fearless wine experts positioned and ready to extract wine collections from potential danger zones before disaster strikes.

Wine Emergency Storage


With hurricane season gearing up we at Xpeditr Inc. want to ensure our clients are educated, prepared and equipped to protect themselves and their wine collections from damage. With some advanced planning before storms hit, everyone and every bottle have a better chance! (more…)

xpeditr wine transportation


As the leading door-to-door transport provider in the wine-shipping industry, we are consistently refining our approach to accommodate the needs of our clients. Moving a wine bottle, or an entire wine collection is a task that requires precision. Whether it’s local, cross-country, or cross-border wine transportation, there are several factors to consider when it comes to protecting your liquid treasures: (more…)

Xpeditr Inc. in the Media

ELIZABETH, N.J. (PRWEB) AUGUST 28, 2018 – Renown for excellence in wine transportation across the USA and Canada, Xpeditr Inc. now delivers to super yachts across North America. Whether it’s a sports team traveling by boat or a sailing crew traversing the seas, Xpeditr provides hassle free, temperature-controlled wine delivery to tax-free ports, and will even load the bottles onboard.

Insured and bonded, Xpeditr takes special care of fine wine transportation from start to finish. First, wine bottles are packed in corrugated wine boxes that allow for climate control in addition to carefully protecting each individual bottle from damage. Then, boxes are carefully loaded in trucks specifically designed for temperature-controlled wine transportation ensuring wine boxes are secured, and temperature and humidity levels are stable so wine does not spoil. Upon arrival at the tax-free port wine boxes are unloaded and bottles carefully stored in the onboard wine cellar.

wine insurance xpeditr

Home insurance and other general policies might not provide the coverage you expect when it comes to your wine cellar and the liquid treasures it contains! The answer lies in the fine print; some home insurance policies might provide minimal coverage for damage caused by fire, flood, or theft, while others may not provide any coverage at all. (more…)

Health benefits of wine


Wine has a history of use for medicinal purposes; a digestive aid, a cure for lethargy or the common cold, and even pain management. Throughout time, wine has been praised for it’s magical health benefits, without a full understanding of the interactions that actually promote health.

Researchers have determined that the secret to the health benefits of wine lies in the antioxidants (specifically resveratrol) found in the skins of many grapes. As skins are incorporated in the red wine making process, concentrations of antioxidants are higher in red versus white wine. (more…)

perfect wine glass

The Xpeditr Team is made up of fine wine collectors and connoisseurs who genuinely appreciate the aroma, body and finish of a perfectly aged wine, and we’re here to share our knowledge, experience and secrets with you!

Wine enthusiasts have an endless choice of accessories aimed at creating a luxurious wining experience; decanters of all shapes and sizes, cork removers, stoppers, coolers, vacuum seals, and more! It is easy to become overwhelmed. But when wine is on the agenda, all that is really needed is a corkscrew and the perfect wine glass. (more…)

Xpeditr Inc. in the Media

(PR Web, April 23, 2018) — “My Private Sommelier” by Xpeditr Inc. gives clients what they need: a personal, experienced and qualified sommelier to not only manage their fine wine collection but transform their entire wine experience. My Private Sommelier Services commences with a wine cellar visit where wines are inventoried, catalogued, appraised, tasting notes compiled and updated, and the storage environment assessed to ensure conditions are prime for aging.

Backed by decades of industry experience and trusted for their expertise, Xpeditr Inc. sommeliers work directly with clients to create personalized wine and food pairings that take into account taste preferences, the harmony of flavours on the menu, and the special occasion. Whether having a private dinner for two, a glamorous cocktail party, hosting a wine tasting or corporate event, sommeliers will create a unique multi-course wine menu that is sure to impress.

XPEDITR Inc. in the Media

(PRWEB, JANUARY 09, 2018) – Following the destruction of precious, rare and historic wine collections valued at over $7 million during hurricane Sandy in 2012, fine wine transportation specialists, Xpeditr, launched XERT, the Xpeditr Emergency Response Team.

As specialists in temperature-controlled wine storage, shipping and transportation across USA and Canada, Xpeditr is on a mission to protect and preserve liquid treasures. They are renown for their premium fine wine relocation services, and now their Emergency Response Team!

Xpeditr Inc. in the Media

(Decanter, September 12, 2017) — Some Florida residents reportedly made hurried calls to wine removals specialists in an attempt to protect valuable bottles from Hurricane Irma, which has left a trail of destruction through the US state and across the Caribbean, with dozens of deaths reported.

It won’t have topped the list of concerns for many, but wine removals specialist Xpeditr said that its “emergency response team” was dealing with requests in Florida to rescue precious bottles from the path of Hurricane Irma.