How to Keep Wine Fresh After Opening: 5 Tips for Prolonged Perfection

Whether it’s an expensive bottle of red or a refreshing bottle of white, wine is a treat to be savored. But once you uncork a bottle, it can be challenging to keep the wine fresh for longer than a day or two. Fortunately, there are some tips and tricks that will help you extend the life of your open bottle of wine. Here are five tips to help you prolong the perfection of your wine.

1. Store Your Wine Properly

The first and most essential step in prolonging the freshness of your wine is to store it properly. Once you open the bottle, the wine is exposed to air, which can cause oxidation and spoilage. The standard solution is to replace the cork and store the bottle upright in the refrigerator. This will slow down the oxidation process, keeping the wine fresh for a few days.

However, if you want to go one step further, invest in a wine preserver. Wine preservation systems work by removing the oxygen from the bottle, slowing down the oxidation process dramatically. This includes using gas, vacuum and even wine preservation systems that dispense the precise amount of wine without exposing the rest of the bottle to air.

Preservation Tips

  • Avoid exposing the wine to light or heat, which can damage the wine flavor.
  • If you choose to store your wine at a regular temperature, drink it within 24 hours of opening.
  • Never shake the wine bottle or use a blender to aerate it, as this can damage the wine’s aroma.

2. Choose the Right Wine Stopper

Choosing the right stopper can also make a significant difference in the longevity of your wine. The market today has several options, each with its benefits and drawbacks. The most popular types are vacuum stoppers, cork stoppers, and screw caps. Comprehensive research carried out by wine experts has shown that cork stoppers tend to reduce the amount of oxygen that passes into the wine, but they can be difficult to remove once they are inserted. Vacuum stoppers are easy to use and remove, but they don’t entirely remove all the oxygen from the bottle.

Screw caps, on the other hand, block all air from getting into the bottle, making them a popular choice for regular wine drinkers. Test all stoppers out to see which one works best for you and your wine preferences.

Choosing the Right Wine Stopper Tips

  • Always choose a stopper that is compatible with the wine bottle.
  • Ensure the cork screwdriver is sharp for easy insertion and removal.
  • Avoid corks that are overly old or dry, as these may not create a tight seal, allowing oxygen to seep into the bottle.

3. Control the Temperature

The temperature can make a significant impact on the freshness of your wine. The ideal temperature for storing wine ranges from 54°F to 55°F. Anything higher than this will accelerate the ageing process and spoil the wine, while anything lower than this will cause the wine to freeze, which will change the taste and texture of the wine.

If you don’t have a wine cooler, store your wine in the refrigerator. This will keep the wine cold and slow down the oxidation process. However, when you want to drink the wine, allow it to warm to room temperature for a few hours as this will enhance the taste, aroma and mouthfeel of the wine.

Controlling Wine Temperature Tips

  • Store your white wine in the refrigerator while storing Red Wine at Room Temperature
  • If possible, invest in a wine cooler that will adjust to the optimal temperature for storing wine.
  • If you are looking to drink a particular bottle sooner than anticipated, warm it up by placing the bottle in a bucket of warm water for 5-7 minutes.

4. Finish the Bottle

The best way to preserve the freshness of your wine is to drink the entire bottle. If you have leftovers, finish them within 24 hours, if possible. Doing this will reduce the likelihood of oxidation and spoilage. However, we understand that sometimes you may not be able to finish the entire bottle. It’s okay if you follow the other tips mentioned in this article.

Finish the bottle Tips

  • Store the leftover wine in a smaller container and fill it all the way to the top.
  • Find a smaller wine bottle or split to place leftover bottles in to decrease the amount of open air in the container.
  • Avoid refrigerating the wine for more than a few days, doing so can alter the taste.

5. Use a Coravin Wine System

If you want to enjoy your wine over an extended period, consider using a Coravin wine system. This is a unique tool that lets you pour wine without removing the cork, so the wine stays fresh and protected from air. The Coravin wine system works like a needle that goes through the cork, and you can pour the wine while the needle is in place.

This system is perfect for wine lovers who enjoy opening different bottles without worrying about finishing them all at once. Also, it’s kind of a cool gadget that will impress your guests as well!

Use a Coravin Wine System Tips

  • Select the right needle size for the cork, and remember to always use the coravin system correctly.
  • Put the wine back to its perfect temperature, using the Coravin Wine Chiller by either chilling or warming wine, depending on what you prefer.
  • Invest in the right maintenance components, to keep the system functioning properly, and make the best out of your long-term wine consumption.

Conclusion

The number one rule for keeping wine fresh after opening is to make sure the bottle is properly stored and sealed. From there, controlling the temperature, using the right wine stopper, and finishing the bottle are all effective ways to prolong the life of your wine. If you want to go one step further, invest in a wine preservation system or use a Coravin wine system to enjoy your wine over a more extended period.

FAQs

  • Q: How long will wine last after opening?
  • A: Generally, white wine stays fresh for three to five days, while red wine lasts for three to seven days.
  • Q: Can I store open wine at room temperature?
  • A: No, doing so will speed up the oxidation process and spoil the wine. Instead, store it in the refrigerator.
  • Q: Are vacuum stoppers effective in keeping wine fresh?
  • A: Yes, it can help slow down the oxidation process, but it cannot prevent it entirely.
  • Q: Can I use a metal bottle stopper on a wine bottle?
  • A: Yes, you can use a metal bottle stopper on a wine bottle, but ensure that it creates a tight seal to prevent oxygen from getting into the wine.
  • Q: Can I re-cork a wine bottle with the same cork after opening?
  • A: No, once the cork is removed from the bottle, it gets compressed, and it will not fit correctly the second time.

References

  • Brown, C. (2013). How to Store Opened Wine – and Keep It Fresh. Retrieved October 12, 2021, from https://www.vinfolio.com/blog/2013/10/11/how-to-store-opened-wine-and-keep-it-fresh/
  • Davis, C. (2021). How to Keep Wine Fresh After Opening. Retrieved October 12, 2021, from https://www.thespruceeats.com/how-to-keep-opened-wine-fresh-3511051
  • Sommelier Society of America. (2021). The Best Way to Store Opened Wine. Retrieved October 12, 2021, from https://sommeliersocietyofamerica.org/the-best-way-to-store-opened-wine/

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