How to keep an open bottle of wine?

How many times did you give up uncorking a wine because you knew you wouldn't finish it? The good news is that there are a few ways to keep it once you've uncovered it.

Last update: August 30, 2021

Is it possible to keep an open bottle of wine? Yes, only that we must take into account some tips so that its decomposition is delayed. When we uncork a wine, it is likely that we will not finish it that same day and we want to have it a little longer to enjoy it at another time.

However, once opened, the wine has a limited shelf life before it loses its qualities. Although a first oxygenation when uncorking a wine is positive, because it helps to release its aromas and flavors, after a few hours the wine begins its involution.

However, if we do not finish the bottle, we must not throw away the content. There are strategies that we can apply to keep it in good condition for a longer time.

Tips for properly storing an open bottle of wine

In addition to the negative effects that oxygen has on wine, there are certain bacteria and yeasts that contribute to its alteration. These are microorganisms that are in the environment and that, when placed in the open bottle, accelerate fermentation processes that affect organoleptic characteristics.

In general, and always depending on the storage conditions, white and rosé wine last about 3 days. A young red could last up to a week, while a more aged one from 2 to 3 days. If the wine has been previously decanted before drinking it, it will not be possible to keep this time because it has already been oxygenated for a considerable time.

On the other hand, organic wines and pinot noir They are the most delicate and the ones that last the least time once opened. Finally, those specimens richer in tannins can be kept for up to a week, provided they are properly stored.

General storage conditions

Ideally, keep the bottle in a cool space, whose temperature does not exceed 13 degrees centigrade. In this sense, the refrigerator is usually the best option to slow down the process. Always try that the place does not receive natural or artificial light.

Wine that was highly oxygenated when uncorked reduces its later storage capacity. This is what happens with those decanted.

Vertical position

By keeping the bottle in a horizontal position, we leave more of the wine surface in contact with oxygen, which is the main enemy in this case. That is why it is recommended to keep the bottle upright, to reduce the amount of wine affected by the air.

Closed bottle

When you go to store the bottle, make sure it is tightly capped. If you use the same cork, the better. Its material is designed to minimize the oxygen that the wine could receive.

The bark of the cork oak helps in optimal conservation. If the cork is broken or lost, you can use various special stoppers that are sold in the market.

Use the side of the cork that has already been in contact with the wine and has become stained. The other end may not be clean.

Smaller bottle

With the help of a funnel you can transfer what you have left of the wine to a smaller bottle, to further reduce the oxygen present in the container. Try to leave a couple of centimeters of empty bottle between the cap and the liquid.

Vacuum pump

This is a device used to extract air from the bottle. It is an ideal tool for those who drink their daily glass of wine. It allows its good conservation in the refrigerator.

Dispenser inert gas

The dispenser Inert gas is an artifact that releases gases, among which we can mention nitrogen. Although it is an expensive product, it is worth a try.

What is to be avoided?

As we have reviewed so far, air, heat and light do not go well with wine. We are going to add vibration to these factors.

When a wine must be transported long distances, the movements that are generated in the bottle disturb the sediments, which could cause an alteration in the flavor. That is, before and after uncorking a wine, it must be treated with great care, avoiding oxygenate excess.

Likewise, if when you open a bottle you already know in advance that you will not finish it, cork it again after pouring yourself a drink and put the bottle in the refrigerator right away. Many times, the table top is extended and the wine has already begun its oxidation process.

Corks are designed to allow adequate passage of oxygen into the bottle, so you should keep it for later storage.

Keeping an open bottle of wine in good condition is possible

What is not possible is to know exactly is when a bottle of wine that has been opened expires. It all depends on the varietal, the year of harvest and the quality of the wine you want to keep.

However, if you follow the advice that we have shared with you, it is likely that you can extend its properties. Thus, you reserve the drink and you can savor it at another time.

Now we know that it is not necessary to discard what is left, but can be saved. So you could delight yourself with a drink that, according to experts, in moderate amounts improves some cardiovascular characteristics.