With thousands of different grape varieties, made in over seventy countries and all styles available, there’s no doubt wine is the most complex (and loved) agricultural product in the market.
The best part? You never stop learning about wine! Today we’re learning all about wine storage, mainly the (rare) occasion when you have leftover wine.
How to store it? What to do with it? And most importantly, how long will an opened bottle of wine last?
Read on for these answers and much more useful information. You learn something every day, and that’s particularly true when it comes to wine.
Wine’s Mortal Enemies
Wine is a pretty resistant beverage, mainly because alcohol protects it from spoilage, but also for its high acidity and all those minuscule particles dissolved in it. The very same compounds that give color, texture and flavor to the wine.
Having said that, wine is also fragile. Especially when it faces its mortal enemies:
Oxygen present in the air can oxidize wine overnight. For starters, your precious liquid will lose its fruitiness, but that’s not the worst part. When wine is in contact with air, acetic bacteria kick in, and they’re very efficient when it comes to turning wine into vinegar.
Heat will speed up your wine’s aging process, even if the bottle is sealed. As with other foods, keeping wine chilled extends its shelf life, which applies to leftover wine too. Excess heat is another matter — leaving your wine collection in the trunk of your car an entire day will cause it to ‘cook,’ and the damages will be irreparable.
Light, especially UV rays, will break down the flavor and aromatic molecules in your wine. Slowly but surely, your wine will lose freshness. This is less of a problem for leftover wine since you need days or weeks to see the light’s damage.
How to store wine after opening? Keeping it safe from heat, oxygen and light. Putting back the cork and storing your bottle in your fridge will do the trick for a few days, but you might want to use a wine vacuum to make sure the wine is not in contact with oxygen.
Really, How Long Does Wine Last?
The hard truth is that wine starts to decay the moment you open it, and that’s not a bad thing because that evolution you perceive in your glass is what’s most enjoyable. That’s why you never want to drink wine in disposable cups. Talking about wine glasses, make sure you check out Bravario’s Tritan unbreakable wine glasses here.
Stored in the fridge, you can enjoy your wine for the next few days, being three days the most accepted time frame.
Red wine will resist a bit longer because of the tannins and anthocyanins protecting it from oxidation. You might find your wine in an acceptable shape even after five days.
Not everyone knows this, but sparkling wine lasts a few days, too, especially if you manage to keep those bubbles tightly trapped with a special sparkling wine stopper.
Sweet wine lasts the longest. Sugar is a natural preservative and will protect your wine for an entire week without noticing any signs of decay.
Of course, all wines are different and will behave differently after opened.
Best Ways to Store Your Wine
To store an opened bottle of wine, follow the next tips.
If you have unfinished wine bottles often, consider buying half bottles instead; that way, your wine will always be fresh. You can find every type of wine in this smaller format, and that’s because many people enjoy only a couple of glasses at a time.
If you do end up with a few open bottles of wine, you can always mix a sangria pitcher. They’re perfect for outdoor dinner parties. Serve your wine cocktail in unbreakable glasses, and you’ll have tons of fun. Check out the article ‘5 Everyday Occasions Where Unbreakable Glasses Are Better’ for more ideas.
If you really want to store your wine for future enjoyment, then vacuum pump all the oxygen and store it in the fridge, not in the door compartment but in the back, where temperatures are more stable.
Wine’s Purpose is to be Shared
Stored your closed and opened bottles of wine safely and enjoy them any way you want but make wine part of your life.
There’s so much enjoyment in every glass, especially if you’re sharing it with your close friends and family. That’s what wine is all about. Call some friends over, and you’ll never have to deal with an unfinished bottle.