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THE COLLECTORS : A Cellar Without a Cellar

July 14, 1994|DAN BERGER

Wine collectors who'd rather not store their bottles in a space reserved for the family car or the washer and dryer can now rent public wine storage lockers in temperature-controlled locations. Some of these are run by wine merchants. The facilities differ--some are elaborate, others bare-bones. So prices vary.

Each listing below includes the smallest wine locker available at each facility at the lowest price (which may require climbing a ladder to reach the locker) and the largest locker. In most cases, the large lockers are walk-in units. Prices listed are per year. Users normally provide their own padlocks.

Some wine authorities believe that refrigerated facilities are better than air-conditioned ones because it's easier to maintain the higher humidity levels needed to prevent corks from drying out.

Hours of operation, insurance and other services may vary greatly. For example, one operator is open only two days per week. Contact each to see which facility fits your needs.

But don't be surprised if the facility you prefer has no space. Demand for wine locker storage has increased recently, and some facilities may have limited vacancies.

WEST LOS ANGELES

* Twenty-Twenty Wines, 2020 Cotner Ave. Smallest locker: 12-case, $120. Largest locker: 500-case, about $2,000. Refrigerated. Contact: Bob Golbahar, (310) 447-2020.

* Los Angeles Fine Art and Wine Storage, 2290 Centinela Ave. Smallest locker: 24-case, $125. Largest locker: 500-case, $4,200. Air-conditioned, humidified. Contact: Debbie Goldfinger or John Francis, (310) 447-7700.

* The Wine Cellar, 1919 S. Pontius Ave. Smallest locker: 15-bottle vault, $16. Largest locker: up to 900 cases, call for details and prices. Refrigerated and humidified. Contact: Terry O'Hagen, (310) 477-9463.

* Wally's, in the Beverly Connection, La Cienega Boulevard near Beverly Boulevard. Refrigerated, underground. Smallest locker: 25-case, $150. Largest locker: 200-case, $850. Contact: Steve Wallace, (310) 475-0606.

* The Wine House, 2311 Cotner Ave., West Los Angeles. Smallest locker: 40-case, $125. Largest locker: 250-case, $1,500. Refrigerated. Contact: Dan Palmer, (310) 479-3731.

SAN FERNANDO VALLEY

* The Wine Box, 6210 Platt, West Hills. Smallest locker, 12-case, $132; largest, 500-case, $2,100. Refrigerated, underground. Contact: Lee Lynch or Steven Ein, (818) 703-0090 or (619) 322-9713.

* The Wine Locker, 14819 Calvert St., Van Nuys. Smallest locker: 16-case, $114. Largest locker: 24-case, $208. Refrigerated, with humidity control. Contact: Rick Jason, (818) 781-1600.

* Northridge Hills Liquor and Wine Warehouse, 11249 Tampa Ave., Chatsworth. Smallest locker: 14-case, $125. Largest locker: 240-case, $1,125. Refrigerated and air-conditioned. Contact: Paul Smith, (800) 678-9463.

ORANGE COUNTY

* Hi-Time Cellars, 250 Ogle St., Costa Mesa. Smallest locker: 6-case, $72. Largest locker: 1,000-case, $5,400. Refrigerated. Contact: Beverly Jordaly, (714) 650-8463.

* Wine Club, 2110 E. McFadden Blvd., No. E, Santa Ana. Smallest locker: 7 1/2-case, $67.50. Largest locker: 15-case, $135. Air-conditioned. Jim Lilly. (714) 835-6485, (800) 966-5432.

* Wine Cellar Club, 17162 Murphy Ave. Unit A, Irvine. Smallest locker: 8-case, $120. Largest locker: 3,000-case, $3,300. Contact: Steve Greenberg, (714) 252-1828, (818) 992-3267.

* Rolf's, 865 Production Place, Newport Beach. Smallest locker: 6-case, $66. Largest locker: 100-case, $825. Refrigerated. Contact: Rick Webster, (714) 631-1212.

GLENDALE

* The Cave, 711 E. Broadway. Smallest locker: 6-case, $50. Largest locker: 24-case, $160. Refrigerated. Underground. Contact: Joe Burns, (818) 242-5192.

* The Wine Vault, 929 S. Brand Blvd. Smallest locker: 12-case, $103. Largest locker: 1,000-case, $5,940; also, custom spaces available. Air-conditioned and humidified. Contact: Nancy Hathaway, (818) 545-9463.

RIVERSIDE

* Vintage Vaults, 1660 Chicago Ave., Suite No. N 5. Smallest locker, 8-case, $110. Largest locker, 220-case, $1,575. Refrigerated. Contact: Scott Waller, (909) 682-9463.

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