In summer be careful taking your wine purchases home

Don't keep wine in hot car

Now that wine, brewery and distillery tours are back and the summer heat has finally returned, it’s a good time for a critical reminder—don’t cook your newly bought beverages in your car.

I once ruined an excellent red wine, a gift for a friend, by leaving it in my trunk for just a little while, thinking it would be OK. It was under a screwcap, so no cork to dry out, under a layer of “protective” clothing, and it was a warm spring day in Vancouver, not a scorcher in the Okanagan. Nothing extreme to worry about, I thought but as we all know, a warm day outside can make a car stifling hot in mere minutes. That heat can damage your purchases faster than a good bartender can make a martini.

If you’re finally getting out there to visit and support local producers, plan ahead for the rising temperatures.

Consider a tour company. Not only is it safer if you’re tasting and no one misses out on the experience and has to be the designated driver, tour companies may be able to keep the air conditioning on while you’re in a tasting room or have other ways of keeping the van or bus cool.

If you’re making a larger purchase, ask about shipping. Wineries, for example, may waive shipping fees on a minimum number of bottles and they use companies that are well-versed in climate control and the handling of perishables.

Driving yourself (and a few friends)? Pack along a cooler or an insulated bag to keep the heat off of your bottles or cans. Ice packs are also way better than ice itself, as that melts, causes a mess and will damage the labels on the bottles. The gel version of ice packs should do the trick.

No matter what you’ve put your purchases in, avoid the trunk of your vehicle. Yes, it’s dark but there’s no airflow or air conditioning. You may hop into a hot car and crank the air conditioning up but the cool air is probably not reaching the case of wine you’ve had in your vehicle’s trunk all day.

Even if I have a short drive, if the sun is at full tilt I put bottles on the floor of my car – in a box or bag so they don’t roll around – and point the air conditioning down, even for a few minutes.

And one last tip, be careful not to shock your purchases if they have be warmed by chilling them too quickly.

Enjoy your purchases once you’re home and they are safely put away.

This article is written by or on behalf of an outsourced columnist and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

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About the Author

A creative thinker with more than two decades of experience in communications, Allison is an early adopter of social and digital media, bringing years of work in traditional media to the new frontier of digital engagement marketing through her company, All She Wrote.

She is the winner of the Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association's 2011 and 2012 awards for Social Media Initiative, an International LERN award for marketing, and the 2014 Penticton Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Award for Hospitality/Tourism.

Allison has amassed a following on multiple social networks of more than 30,000, frequently writes and about social media, food and libations as well as travel and events, and through her networks, she led a successful bid to bring the Wine Bloggers Conference to Penticton in June 2013, one of the largest social media wine events in the world, generating 31 million social media impressions, $1 million in earned media, and an estimated ongoing economic impact of $2 million.

In 2014, she held the first Canadian Wine Tourism Summit to spark conversation about the potential for wine tourism in Canada as a year-round economic driver.

Allison contributes epicurean content to several publications, has been a judge for several wine and food competitions, and has earned her advanced certificate from the Wine and Spirit Education Trust.

In her spare time, she has deep, meaningful conversations with her cats.

She can be reached at [email protected]

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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