I completely agree that shipping wines in an exreme (hot or cold) condition is not a good idea. But, sometimes, I have to send/receive the wines in these weather conditions. I found some discussions on this topic here but still confused and need more opinions from you.

1. Heat damage: how likely?

To me, I had received some wines in hot summer days (June to Aug/Sep) and haven't had any sign of heat damage (visible and in taste) so far. In an extreme case, I have the wines received after 10 days since they were shipped from Napa. I noticed no heat damage at all. I shared the same thoughts with other friends (heat damage happens not as often as we can image). But, on the other hand, many people told that they experienced many heat damages on the wines shipped in hot temperatures. Though there are many other variables (packaging, wine varietal, etc), I just want to ask your opinions again.

2. Tips for shipping in hot weather: Would styrofoam still be better for insulating wines against heat? How about putting a type of gel inside of styro (like put 8-9 bottles with 2-3 ice gel in a 12-bottle shipper)? Please let me know if there's better idea on shipping in hot weather.
Original Post
quote:
e wines received after 10 days since they were shipped from Napa. I noticed no heat damage at all. I shared the same thoughts with other friends (heat damage happens not as often as we can image). But, on the other hand, many people told that they experienced many heat damages on


I think an ice pack can give some peace of mind but really wines are not super fragile. Living in California, I receive lots of wine in hot weather and, knock on wood, have yet to have any ruined by the heat. I just received a 6 pack today and it was cool to the touch and it is a beautiful, sunny day out.
Can you ship in hot weather? Yes. Styrofoam (or similar products) help greatly.
I received a shipment of one bottle, not long ago, that the seller (on their own accord) included a cold pack item inside. It didn't help (and the weather wasn't hot). The Styrofoam did fine.

Bottom line: Why risk it?
IMO, just not worth it. I'm pretty much finished now with shipping. What's not already enroute now, will likely stay until Autumn.
quote:
Originally posted by KSC02:
Can you ship in hot weather? Yes. Styrofoam (or similar products) help greatly.
I received a shipment of one bottle, not long ago, that the seller (on their own accord) included a cold pack item inside. It didn't help (and the weather wasn't hot). The Styrofoam did fine.

Bottom line: Why risk it?
IMO, just not worth it. I'm pretty much finished now with shipping. What's not already enroute now, will likely stay until Autumn.


Did your '05 Chablis make it out in time?

Mine is on hold as of today.
I live in CA, and I don't hesitate to have wine shipped to me in the summer if it is for summer drinking. Now the stuff for the cellar, that I only receive between November and about April. I don't think the heat damage will be an issue. But I would not want to gamble on a bottle that cost $75 that is being held for 15 years. The combination of high price plus waiting is a deterrent for such behavior.
quote:
Originally posted by wine+art:
Did your '05 Chablis make it out in time?
Mine is on hold as of today.

Received it late last week.
Today, just received the '95 Margaux and a '96 Montrose. Not hot here really. Mid 70's and styrofoam packed. However, that's as close as I care to take it with an aged wine like that.
Stefania Syrahs incoming this week.
I dont have wine shipped from June- September. May make an excpetion here or there if I am having it shipped from Napa/ No cal to me since I get it the next day..but I'll only do that if I know weather is 80 or below. Not worth the risk to me. I have had cooked bottles and it isn't a happy experience.
Most winery clubs won't ship after June and start up again in September. We shipped quite alot of wine home from Napa last July. Some of the wineries would not ship at that time. When we were out there temps had been over 100 degrees. Some of the wine hat did get shipped was pretty hot when it arrived, and look out if you missed the delivery that day. Then your wine spends the entire day riding in an over heated truck. I am all for waiting.
Most of us worry about our wines more than we probably need to, but why risk it? I would not patronize a winery or retailer who would not ship according to my wishes.

Here is my totally unscientifically proven opinion...

I don't want my wine ever reaching 80 degrees and I would prefer to minimize the amount of time it spends in the high 70's. If you have a bottle shipped to you in Chicago from Napa via UPS, it more than likely is picked up in the late afternoon and goes down to the UPS depot in San Pablo on the SF Bay. It's almost always cool and/or foggy there. From there, depending on method of shipment it is either trucked to the airport or trucked to a train. While there are no guarantees exactly how UPS is going to pull it off, they don't make their money by having a package sit around. That package is going to be almost in constant motion towards you until it reaches the final depot. If it reaches that final depot on a Saturday or Sunday, then it sits, but otherwise, the trains are rolling. The most dangerous time for that package is the last few miles. The best thing you can do to ensure its safety is ship to a business address. Business deliveries often happen earlier in the day. They also always have someone to sign for the wine. The last thing you want is for the wine to ride on the brown truck for a full shift and get back to their warehouse to try the next day.

Obviously styrofoam and gel packs are nice additions to your peace of mind if available.
quote:
Originally posted by Randy Sloan:
The most dangerous time for that package is the last few miles.

I agree with you, Randy. IF, by chance, I can't have my delivery shipped directly where I'll be that day, then I always make a point to pick the package up that evening at the UPS station. With my Fed Ex guy, he allows me to drop by his home to pick up my package, at the end of the day. Great guy!

All that to say that I'll always go to great lengths to avoid that add'l day if the first delivery attempt is missed. IMO, Randy hit the biggest risk bang on.
I called Zachy's today to inquire about shipping some port to me here in Buffalo and they said that they would not ship at all while the temperature was so hot (though they do not seem to have a defined limit, just "too hot now") and even when it cools a bit, they said that they would only ship next day delivery between now and September.

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