November 05, 2023 by Alyssa Taylor
The Sunday Sip: How Long is a Wine Good After Opening?
Q: How long is a wine good after opening?
A: Uncorked wine longevity can vary between white and red wine. Generally speaking though, most wines will last open for only about 3-5 days before they start to spoil. This is all going to depend on how the opened bottle of wine is being stored properly, so we’ve created these simple steps to follow for saving your open wine:
(1) Store in a cool and dark place. Honestly, we recommend sticking the wine in a refrigerator. The low and cool temperature helps slow down oxidation.
(2) Always have a wine stopper or cork put back in place to prevent excess oxygen from getting in.
** Something like a VacuVin wine stopper can be nice if used properly – these are designed to remove oxygen from the bottle. The pump extracts the air from an opened bottle and reseals it, to enjoy a glass of wine whenever you like. The Coravin Wine Preservation System is a staple in my household – this is a splurge though and can only be used on natural cork! OXO and Repour companies also make great wine stoppers that I highly recommend.
(3) If the wine in the bottle is really low, you might want to consider pouring it into a smaller bottle. The most important thing is to minimize the amount of oxygen contact.
If you are following the proper storing techniques, here’s a general guideline on how long different styles of wine last open:
- Sparkling Wine: 1-4 days (in a fridge with a sparkling wine stopper)
- Light White and Rosé Wines: 5-7 days (in a fridge with a cork or stopper)
- Full-Bodied White Wine: 3-5 days (in a fridge with a cork or stopper)
- Red Wine: 3-5 days (in a cool, dark place or refrigerator with a cork or stopper)
- Fortified Wine: 28 days (in a cool, dark place with a cork or stopper)
Lastly, keep in mind that “spoiled” wine is essentially just vinegar – it will not harm you! The vinegar-like smell stems from acetic acid bacteria in the wine consuming the alcohol and metabolizing it into acetaldehyde. Additionally, the alcohol in wine can oxidize, causing a nutty, bruised, or rotten-fruit-like smell and taste. These are both chemical reactions, and so the lower the temperature you keep a wine, the more slowly this will happen.