How I find my wines

Not to suggest that this is the only way to do it but the basic principles are probably applicable to most cellars.

I have 4 types of storage in my cellar...

Case Boxes of wine in original packaging, cardboard box or wooden case.
Foam Sealed foam containers (hold 18 bottles).
Bin Multiple bottle storage in rack sometimes in the form of a Diamond bin.
Rack Single bottle storage in racks.

I use the first letter of each to identify the type of storage followed by a number for C, F and B and a grid reference for R in the form of...

C01 - C99, F01 - F99, B01 - B99 and RA01 - RZ99

Pretty simple for Case, Foam and Bin as each is numbered from 01 to 99 and the single bottle storage uses a spreadsheet type format where the top left hand corner is A01. I prefer to run the letters down the rack and the numbers across as I'm never going to have racks more than 26 bottles high, but it doesn't matter which way you do it.

If you have multiple racks then you can insert an additional number into the Location in the form of...

R1A01 - R1Z99, R2A01 - R2Z99 etc., where 1 and 2 is the number of the rack.

Keeping it simple

I store all my wines in single bottle storage in vertical columns (ie. a number of bottles of the same wine) and record the Location for the top bottle only.

In the above diagram the first wine (say 5 bottles of 1988 Penfolds Bin 707) is stored in RA01 - RE01 and the next wine starts at RG01. As the Location is recorded as RA01 and RG01 and as long as you remember to remove the bottles from the bottom of the vertical column (ie. RE01 would be the next 707 to go), you never have to edit the Location field as you remove bottles.

And as you know the start location and the number of bottles you therefore know the location of every bottle of that wine.

Adding some Search Wildcards

By creating some "Lost Souls" with C, F and B stored in the Location Field, as well as R1 and R2 (as I have two racks) I can then separately list all wines in...

Foam Containers
and the 3 Racks

The Search Sort dialog has a button labelled "Display Lost Souls" and after selecting the Location (or Region) list, clicking this button will list all the "Lost Souls" that have data in these fields.