If you´ve read my previous post and never have been to Moravia (Czech Republic), you might still be baffled by Czech wine cellars. Indeed, if you are imagining a regular sized wine cellar inside somebody´s house, you have to wonder how (and why) people spend hours drinking there instead of their living rooms, for example.
That can be easily explained by the fact that Czech wine cellars tend to be separate, individual buildings often in a different street (or even a different town) than the owner´s home. To an unfamiliar eye, a Czech wine cellar looks simply like a very small house or – in some cases – like a certain hobbit´s residence. No matter the cellars´ outside appearance, they are all built underground to maintain the right temperature as their main purpose is, of course, to store wines.
Traditional wine cellars consist of two parts: there is a deeper area full of wine barrels, bottles or other wine storing containers; and there is one usually small room closer to the surface that often includes wooden benches and – if you are lucky – a woodstove. (In any case, bring a sweater and full shoes if going to a cellar.) When spending an evening in such a wine cellar, you will most likely visit both of these parts and you will most definitely always have a full glass of wine in your hand and something to eat within your reach.
In many towns, you can also find very large, several kilometres long cellars (or tunnels, if you will), where you can go enjoy a drink. Such places are generally commercial and owned by bigger companies, but still offer a great experience.
We will soon publish posts about individual wine cellars and places to visit. For now, this is what Czech wine cellars look like: