Whether you’re a professional mixologist or just someone who enjoys a nice bottle of wine every now and then, having your own barware makes a huge difference. There’s something to be said for having a nice pint glass for that craft beer or an actual champagne flute for that celebratory bubbly. If you’re renting a storage unit for your barware, it’s important to know a few things before you start packing your glasses, bar tools and other supplies.
Here are five tips for storing barware.
Before you store your barware—and after you take it out of storage—it’s important to wash it, preferably by hand. While you can certainly get away with putting some items in the dishwasher (pint glasses, for example), it’s best to err on the side of caution and wash all barware by hand, especially decanters, champagne flutes and wine glasses. If something looks delicate, it probably is. Putting barware in a dishwasher might not destroy it, but it could certainly chip, crack or scratch it.
If you’re really fancy, fill a bowl with very hot (almost boiling) water. After washing wine and champagne glasses, hover them above the bowl of hot water, rim side down and collect steam. Then polish with a microfiber cloth.
One last tip about washing any piece of barware made of glass: Keep your temperature consistent. Alternating between hot and cold can cause cracks.
If you’re storing barware, it’s possible that you’re storing other kitchen utensils too. Avoid the urge to store bar tools—like muddlers, jiggers and cocktail spoons—with your forks, knives and other cutlery. They might get scratched or even lost. A barware roll-up is a better storage solution.
It’s a great—albeit slightly boring—debate. Do you store glasses rim side up or rim side down? People who believe in storing glasses rim side up typically do so to prevent accidentally chipping or breaking the rim when it comes into contact with whatever surface it is being placed on. People who store rim side down usually do this to prevent dust and debris from settling in the glass and ending up in a drink.
In self storage, you’ll be keeping glasses in a box like this (ask your storage facility about moving supplies, order online or check with a local liquor store). You’ll also be washing them after removing them from storage, so debris isn’t an issue, but damage to the rim still is. In this case, storing glasses rim side up wins. Be sure to also always label boxes so you know which side is up, and avoiding stacking too many on top of each other.
Climate controlled storage doesn’t tack on too much to the price of a storage unit, and it’s always a good idea if you’re storing something valuable or you’re storing long term. When it comes to storing barware, you want to avoid moisture and extreme temperatures from affecting the interior of your storage unit.
As we mentioned early, glass is sensitive to drastic switches between hot and cold, so if you live somewhere with dramatic fluctuations between daytime and nighttime temperatures, or where humidity is a major factor, climate control is a good idea for keeping your barware safe in self storage.
Choose drive up storage when you’re storing something heavy or fragile. A drive up storage unit can help you avoid any damage that may occur in transit between your car and your storage unit. Be sure to avoid packing boxes too heavy for this same reason. It’s better to have five small boxes filled with wine glasses than one massive box filled with wine glasses that’s so heavy you might drop it.