Lexifabricographer For when the right word just won’t do…

May 26, 2008

For the love of God, Montressor!

Filed under: the renovated life — lexifab @ 10:40 am

Fi finally managed to kick my arse sufficiently into gear to do something about our ‘wine cellar’ on the weeknd. Anyone who’s not visited the Nerdfarm for dinner is likely unaware that our garage features a three foot deep, brick-lined mechanic’s pit, in which we have socked away those spoils of our South Island visit of 2005 that we haven’t already consumed.

It’s a pretty good subsitute for a purpose-built cellar, in that it’s relatively cool and immune to disturbance by anything short of an earth tremor. It does have one or two issues, however, being that we can’t be certain that it maintains a constant temperature (which is pretty important for wine) and it is subject to a rather alarming amount of seepage.

On the second point, it’s pretty obvious that the walls and floor of the pit are in direct contact with bare earth, and any moisture therein pretty quickly finds its way through. Most of the time, everything surface is at least cool and clammy, if not actually moist. This doesn’t really have any effect on the glass, but there’s a risk that any cork stoppers could develop mould and a certainty that sooner or later the labels are going to just rot away (or be consumed by silverfish). Annoying! Moreover, the plywood shelves that we erected to store the bottles on are now so bowed with the damp thay they were in imminent danger of bending right off their brackets, which would have resulted in falls, breakage, sadness.

The cheap-(ish) solution: Reject Shop shoe racks (three tiers of light mesh on a basic aluminium frame, which will be rather less likely to rot away than ply) for storage, builders’ aluminium sheeting lining floor, walls and the inside of the lid (which we think will regulate the temperature, though we’ll be testing that theory to make sure we’re not cooking our pinots) for insulation and little buckets of moisture-absorbent flakes (calcium carbonate, I think, though I didn’t bother looking too closely) for the damp.

While one definite benefit is that we’ve greatly expanded our storage capacity – the old shelves made less than perfect use of the space – we’re hopeful that it will also prevent us from having to resort to the excessively snobby purchase of a wine fridge.


  1. So, really dull morning at work, then?

    Comment by Chris Fellows — May 26, 2008 @ 12:31 pm

  2. Not unusually so. Blogging usually seems like a better idea than doing whatever it is they pay me for.

    Comment by lexifab — May 26, 2008 @ 1:23 pm

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