How Long Does Open Wine Really Last?

If you didn’t finish the bottle of wine you opened last night, you might be wondering how long it will last. Once you’ve learnt how and why wines go bad, you’ll never let another drop go to waste.


How long will it last?

Wine lasts for different lengths of time depending upon many factors. If stored correctly, white wine and roses can last up to four weeks after opening them. Sparkling wines usually last for up to three days once opened. On the other hand, red wine can be kept for up to five days if kept in a cool dark place in winter, and up to three days in summer. There are some wines which are best consumed immediately after opening, including natural and orange wines.

Some things aren’t better with age

Unfortunately, open bottles of wine won’t get better the longer you leave it. So if you have an opened bottle of wine, you might want to finish it ASAP. If you’re not sure you should drink (maybe it’s been a few days), then here’s some tips on how to tell if the wine is bad.

Like most perishable foods and beverages, the best way to tell if something is off is to smell it. If your wine smells musty or vinegary, then it’s safe to assume it’s no good. This generally means that the wine was left open for too long. Does your wine smell like the cork? It’s possible then that your wine has cork-taint, or a faulty cork, making the wine smell like wet dog. The best thing to do then is to tip it out.

Another way to tell if it’s any good is to check the colour. For dark-coloured wines, if the colour has changed to a brownish colour, it’s time to let it go. Same for white wines when they turn a golden or opaque colour. These changes in colour are due to too much exposure to oxygen.

Feeling brave? Your other option is to taste the wine. If the bottle is no good, then it will taste sour or vinegary. Oxidisation will also cause a burnt applesauce flavour, which isn’t really what you want from a red wine.

Unfortunately, there’s no salvaging an off bottle of wine. To avoid pouring another drop down the sink, here’s some tips on making your wine last longer.

First things first, we think it’s time for everyone to know that putting a spoon in the top doesn’t do anything.

The key to storing open wines for longer is to reduce oxidation. Chilled wines including white, sparkling or rosé should be sealed as soon as possible and put back into the fridge standing up. Since sparkling wines don’t last as long as others, you can invest in a sparkling bottle stopper to save bubble loss. Whilst you should also reseal red wines immediately, they can be stored in a cool dark place rather than in the refrigerator.

Of course, the best way to avoid wasting wine is to just drink it. But sometimes that last bit just won’t get finished. We hope you can use these tips to love your wine more.


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