Wine is wonderful, but unless you commit to finishing the bottle there and then, there’s always the danger that you’ll end up wasting half of it. I enjoy a glass of wine now and then, but my wife is not particularly partial to vino. This dynamic has resulted in many a half-emptied bottle of wine being wasted thanks to the ravages of time.
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be this way. Provided you make the necessary arrangements, there are several ways to safely store an opened bottle of wine for up to two weeks—and longer, in some case. Here are five ways to keep an open bottle of wine fresh.
The simplest and quickest way to keep an opened bottle fresh for longer is to re-cork it. Unless the wine is a screw cap lid, simply reinserting the cork will prevent too much air from entering the bottle and spoiling the wine. If possible, try to insert the stained end of the cork into the bottle and not the clean end. The clean end may be easier to insert, but it will introduce foreign particles and elements that may result in the wine spoiling quicker than normal.
Keep it cool
This may seem counterintuitive in the case of red wines, but storing your opened bottle in the fridge will dramatically slow down the oxidation process. Wine should be treated like any other perishable and kept in the fridge after opening. In the case of reds, just remove the wine from the fridge an hour or so before drinking to get it back to room temperature.
The more wine is exposed to air, the quicker it will spoil. Therefore, one sure-fire way to lessen this exposure is to shrink the surface area. Simply decanting an open bottle of wine into smaller bottles will mean that less of the wine is exposed to air and will slow down the oxidation process. As an added bonus, smaller bottles also take up less space in the fridge.
Get a preserver
In the case of high-end wines, it makes sense to bring out the big guns. There are a number of products on the market that can be used to effectively seal an open bottle of wine. These devices use a vacuum to suck air out of the bottle as well as seal it. After the wine has already been exposed to air it will still spoil eventually, but these devices dramatically slow down the process.
Use it for something else
Finally, if there really is no chance that you going to finish that bottle, try turning the remaining wine into cooking ingredients. Simple pour the remaining wine into an ice tray and store it in the freezer. Now, whenever you’re following a recipe that requires wine, you’ll have some ready to use without opening up another bottle.