Q: I just bought a mixed case of 2001 Brunello di Montalcino and a case of 2003 Château Pontet-Canet. With no other place to put them, I put them in my basement. The temperature is around 58 degrees but sometimes it can spike 7—10 degrees. Is this bad? Should I invest in a wine cellar? If yes, do I need to take immediate action or can I wait six months? --Tony
A: Temperature spikes of more than 5 degrees are not ideal, but you can certainly wait six months before purchasing a temperature- and humidity-controlled storage unit, because the average temperature of your basement is satisfactory. If you continue to buy quality wine such as these that you intend to enjoy over time (as opposed to consuming them straight off) you should store them under more consistent conditions.
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