Case Storage - Frequently Asked Questions

If I choose Case Storage, will my wines still be stored in optimal cellaring conditions?

If I choose Case Storage, will my wines be secure?

Will my wine be insured?

Is there a minimum time I must store?

Is there a minimum quantity I must store?

What is the $250 minimum charge?

What does Case Storage cost?

When are the storage fees due?

What if I have to close my account or withdraw cases earlier than planned?

If I deposit or withdraw cases in the middle of the month, do I have to pay for a full month?

Will you inventory the bottles and provide me with a bottle inventory report?

Can you help me move my wine collection to the Fine Wine Reserve?

How do I deposit my wines?

How often can I deposit wines?

Is there a fee to deposit my wines (besides the monthly wine storage fee)?

How do I withdraw my wines?

How often can I withdraw my wines?

Is there a fee to withdraw my wines?

Can I deposit individual bottles or partial cases?

Can I withdraw individual bottles or partial cases?

How should my wine be packaged for storage at The Fine Wine Reserve?

Will my wines be stored so that the bottles are stored on their sides?

Can I store my wine in foam shippers?

Can I open both a Case Storage and Private Cellaring account?

Will I have access to the Tasting Room if I store my wine in Case Storage?

I have decided that I want to store my wines in Case Storage at the Fine Wine Reserve - what next?

If I choose Case Storage, will my wines still be stored in optimal cellaring conditions?

Yes. The quality of the cellaring conditions is exactly the same in Case Storage as in the private wine lockers and cellars. The entire facility is climate-controlled. Computerized zoned cooling systems and a series of temperature monitors ensure stable, homogeneous conditions through the entire cellar. All activity in our cellar is recorded by two separate security systems  - a digital record (of pass card ID's) and a photographic record (closed circuit camera system). This information is reviewed on a regular basis, and archived onto digital storage media.

If I choose Case Storage, will my wines be secure?

Providing the best possible security for your wine was the top priority in the design and construction of the Fine Wine Reserve. Our sophisticated, custom designed security system will constantly watch over your cases. The cellar is equipped with biometric fingerprint technology, infra-red motion-activated digital CCTV, and a series of other systems and controls that force every individual to pass through six layers of security before ever reaching any wine. Your wines are kept in one of our secure bulk storage units. Only Fine Wine Reserve employees have access to those units. All visits to the bulk storage unit by our employees are recorded by two separate security systems (i.e. a digital record of pass card ID's and a closed circuit camera system), and all this information is archived onto digital storage media.

Will my wine be insured?

That is up to you. For details, please see the CELLAR - INSURANCE section of this website.

Is there a minimum time I must store?

No. You may store your wine overnight if that suits your needs ($250 minimum charge applies).

Is there a minimum quantity I must store?

No. You may store 1 case if that suits your needs ($250 minimum charge applies).

What is the $250 minimum charge?

There is no minimum storage term or quantity of wine that you store. Instead, there is a non-refundable Minimum Charge of $250+HST. Once you have paid more than $250 in fees, no further minimums ever apply, and any excess payments credited or refunded. If you only have a few cases, the minimum will have no affect on you provided you are storing longer term. If storing short term, you are also fine provided you are storing enough cases. The minimum charge only becomes a cost factor if you want to store a very small amount of wine for a very short period.

What does Case Storage cost?

The monthly wine storage fee ranges between $2.85 and $3.50 per case per month and varies according to how much wine you store in our cellar. A case is considered to be a regular-sized 12 bottle case from the winery. The rate on small and large cases is adjusted. For example, 1 to 6 bottle cases are discounted $1.30/month and large foam shippers will be an extra $1.75/month (and up). Depending on the storage plan you select, a one-time handling fee of $5/case may also apply. For complete details on storage costs, please see the RATES - CASE STORAGE section of this website.

When are the storage fees due?

Storage fees are due in advance. The amount of prepaid storage fees that are due will depend on the term length you select. Clients may select just about any term length they wish in Case Storage. However, clients storing wine longer than 3 months are required to select a term length at least 3 months in length. Clients storing wine for less than 3 months may select a shorter term.

What if I have to close my account or withdraw cases earlier than planned?

You may terminate your storage term and close your account at any time. Any unused prepaid storage fees on your account over and above the one time minimum charge of $250 will be refunded.

If I deposit or withdraw cases in the middle of the month, do I have to pay for a full month?

No. At the Fine Wine Reserve wine storage fees are calculated on a daily basis. You only pay for the number of days your wine is stored at our facility. For example, if you deposit a case on the 24th of June and then withdraw it 15 days later on the 8th of July, you only pay for 15 days of storage on that case - and not 2 months as would be the case at most storage facilities. Over the long term, with lots of cases coming in and going out, this policy can result in significant savings for the client.

Will you inventory the bottles and provide me with a bottle inventory report?

That is up to you. You can select our bottle inventory services, or you can conduct your own inventory and avoid these costs. For complete details about our bottle inventory services, please see the RATES - CASE STORAGE - OTHER RATE DETAILS section of this website.

Can you help me move my wine collection to the Fine Wine Reserve?

Yes. We can pack and transport wines to our facility at any time. Check out the OTHER SERVICES section of this website for information on cellar packing, pick-up and delivery.

How do I deposit my wines?

There are several options. You can drop them off yourself - we will take them right from your vehicle. Or you can have us pick them up from your home. These two types of deposits (i.e. direct from the customer) are available to all Case Storage clients and there is no extra charge to receive your wines in this manner. You can also ask us to pick your wines up from the LCBO or ask the wine agent to deliver your wines directly to our facility. These two types of deposits are considered to be 3rd party deposits and extra charges may or may not apply. For complete details about 3rd Party Deposits please go to the RATES - CASE STORAGE - OTHER RATE DETAILS section of this website. All deposits require 24 hours advance notice, although we may be able to accommodate you on shorter notice if urgent.

How often can I deposit wines?

All clients can deposit wines as often as they wish, regardless of the storage plan you select.

Is there a fee to deposit my wines (besides the monthly wine storage fee)?

If your storage term is relatively short term (i.e. < 3 years), and you do not need access to your wines, then you may select  Plan #1 and only the monthly wine storage rate applies - there are no other costs or handling fees. If you want access to your wines, then you will select Plan #2, and a $5/case handling fee applies. The handling fee is a one-time charge applied to each case or box upon deposit. If you also want your bottles inventoried, then bottle inventory charges apply. For complete details of our Case Storage fees, please see the RATES - CASE STORAGE section of this website.

How do I withdraw my wines?

You have two options. You can pick them up yourself - we will transfer the cases directly from our conveyor into your vehicle. Or you can ask us to deliver the wines to your home or any other location (delivery charge applies). All withdrawal requests must be made in writing (by e-mail or fax). Withdrawals require 72 hours advance notice, although we may be able to accommodate you on shorter notice if urgent.

How often can I withdraw my wines?

As often as you wish - charges may or may not apply. For complete details about withdrawals, please see the RATES - CASE STORAGE section of this website.

Is there a fee to withdraw my wines?

Customers may withdraw any or all of their wines at any time. Provided you stay within the limits permitted by your Plan, and you only pull full cases, there is no cost to withdraw your wines. Plan #1 accounts are only permitted one free withdrawal, that being when your storage need is complete, and you withdraw ALL your wines. Plan #2 accounts are assigned a certain number of free withdrawals per year, and this varies according to the number of cases in your account. For complete details about withdrawals, please see the RATES - CASE STORAGE - OTHER RATES section of this website.

Can I deposit individual bottles or partial cases?

Yes. Clients may deposit individual bottles. Re-packing ($3 per case) and/or box purchase charges ($8 per case) may apply. Depending on the number of bottles, they will be put in a case designed for 1, 3, 6 or 12 bottles, and the standard monthly wine storage rate for that size of case will apply (i.e. either the small, regular or large case rate). These rates apply regardless of the actual number of bottles in the case. Please note that we cannot deposit loose bottles into empty spaces in previously deposited cases unless you make an official request to withdraw that case. That request will count as a "withdrawal" and will be subject to standard handling fees when re-deposited. If you will be depositing individual bottles frequently, Private Cellaring is likely the more appropriate storage option for you.

Can I withdraw individual bottles or partial cases?

Yes. Clients may request specific bottles from one or more of cases for $2.50/ bottle plus $3/case (re-handling) for each case from which a bottle is pulled. The pull is considered a withdrawal, and a single withdrawal event, regardless of the number of bottles or cases you request. If you have a bottle inventory control on your account, the service includes our consolidating the remaining bottles into empty slots within the cases involved in the pull (on a best effort basis), and then adjusting your bottle inventory to reflect the change. We do this in an attempt to retire half empty cases and save you money on the storage costs. If you do not have the bottle inventory control, we return the case "as is" to storage. If you will be withdrawing individual bottles frequently, then our Private Cellaring storage is likely the more appropriate storage option for you.

How should my wine be packaged for storage at The Fine Wine Reserve?

Wines packed in their original cases (carton or wood) are satisfactory, provided they have a top, and the top is firmly taped or nailed shut. Wine packed in another winery's packaging may also be acceptable, but only if the boxes are high quality (i.e. they formerly contained higher end wines), and contain bottles of the same size and shape for which the box was designed. We will repack any box containing bottles which are incorrectly sized for the box such as when the bottles protrude through the top of the box.

Packing higher end wines into second-hand wine cartons acquired at the LCBO is not recommended. Their boxes are flimsy and of very poor quality - designed for inexpensive, general list wines. The slightest bump during transport or handling (particularly when un-palletized) and your bottles may break. Producers use these low quality/ low cost boxes when only risking $150/case wine. We assume you will be packing a more valuable product. If your bottles arrive in unsafe packaging (particularly those large "Vintages" boxes), we will (at our discretion) repack these wines for a $3 per case repacking charge plus box purchase cost of $8 per case.

If you are packing up loose bottles from your wine cellar, we highly recommend you use our wine boxes. The boxes are specifically designed to protect your wines during transport and storage. They are high quality, double-walled, lay-flat style boxes with two molded fibre inserts - the same inserts used by top Burgundy and Bordeaux producers. Each box holds 12 bottles (6 over 6). The box costs $8, and a partial refund will be issued if the boxes are returned to us in good condition. The empty boxes ship flat, so 75 boxes (plus the 150 trays) will fit in most cars.

Will my wines be stored so that the bottles are stored on their sides?

Yes of course. We protect the top half of your corks by ensuring cellar humidity levels never dip below 65% RH. We protect the bottom half of your corks by ensuring your cases are stored so that the bottles lay on their side or upside down. If we are unsure of the bottle orientation, we open the box to confirm bottle configuration. If you are packing your own wines, into foam shippers (or any wine box for which there is a choice of potential bottle orientation), or if you have placed some or all of the bottles in an unusual orientation (i.e. some bottles are upside down in an upright style case), be sure that you clearly mark this fact on your case.

Can I store my wine in foam shippers?

The Fine Wine Reserve will store your wines in foam shippers, but the monthly wine storage charges will be higher on these very large cases (add $1.75 per case per month and up). Keep in mind that it is not necessary to use foam shippers for wines stored at the Fine Wine Reserve because of our careful transport methods and excellent climate control standards. We recommend that you ask us to repack wines that are packed in foam shippers to reduce your monthly wine storage charges. After box purchase and repacking charges, your total costs will be lower using the regular-sized boxes as long as your storage term length is greater than about 4 months. We do not recommend repacking out of the foam shippers if your wines are to be on site less than three months, and/or, if the wines are destined for long distance, non-refrigerated and/or rough transport within the next six months to a year.

Can I open both a Case Storage and Private Cellaring account?

Yes. Many members have a Private Cellar for wines that are ready to drink (or nearly so), and submit wines destined for long term aging into Case Storage. Every so often they withdraw from Case Storage to restock their Private Cellar.

Will I have access to the Tasting Room if I store my wine in Case Storage?

No. Only clients with a Private Cellaring account are provided unsupervised access to our cellar and the Tasting Room. However, you will still receive invitations to our exclusive wine tasting events. If personal access to our cellar and/or Tasting Room is of interest to you, then you may want to store a portion of your wines in a small private wine locker to qualify.

I have decided that I want to store my wines in Case Storage at the Fine Wine Reserve - what next?

Call us at 416-593-9463. If you want to come in for a tour/inspection, we would be more than happy to show you around. Be forewarned, websites can be misleading. The only way to determine whether or not the operator provides true professional cellaring conditions is to go on the tour, ask questions, and physically look at what controls are in place to control temperature, humidity, etc. Our CellarMaster will give you a full tour of the facility. He will show you firsthand all the equipment and systems we have in place behind the scenes to protect your wines. IIf the Fine Wine Reserve has been recommended to you by a trusted colleague who is already familiar with our facility, then there is no need to visit the facility. We can get you all set up by e-mail, telephone or fax in about 15 minutes. You can then drop off your wines with us, or we'll pick them up from your home or any other location.