How Long Does Red Wine Last Once Opened in the Fridge?

Does Wine Go Bad? 

Did you open your favorite bottle of red wine, have enough, and now wonder whether it can remain safe to drink another day? Are you also wondering how long does red wine last once opened in a fridge?

As part of the answer, wine can go bad because of oxidation, excess heat, and exposure to light.

Please read on if you want to take your refrigerated open red wine at a future date.

Pouring red wine into glass

How Long is Wine Good for After Getting Opened?

Experts vary slightly on how long opened wine can last before going bad, but some general guidelines discussed in this article can help you determine when it’s okay to keep pouring or time to get rid of it. 

Did you know that the size of the wine bottle can also affect how long the opened wine will stay good? Smaller bottles possess a lower amount of air exposure, which slows down the process of oxidation.

Do You Refrigerate Wine?

Should wine be refrigerated? Certainly, yes. It is essential to store opened wine in the fridge if you want it to remain fresh for a longer period. Lowering temperatures decelerates chemical processes, such as bacteria or yeast growth, which can tarnish its taste.

How Long Does Red Wine Last Once Opened in the Fridge?

Regarding red wine, its longevity is proportional to its tannins and acidity. Fuller-bodied wines like Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah can outlast their lighter counterparts, such as Pinot Noir. 

Sometimes, red wine can taste better after oxidation and breathing for a day. If you have opened a red wine, be sure to refrigerate it. Doing so makes it last for three to five days.

Also, please do not believe the misconception that leaving it on the counter at room temperature is a safe practice.

How Long Does Unopened Wine Last?

An unopened bottle of wine can stay good for years longer than an open bottle if stored correctly. However, some wines do not require aging, so it’s important to research or check with the wine vendor before storing. Waiting too long may result in the wine losing its appeal and freshness. 

Ultimately, not all wines are equal; some taste better when consumed young, whereas others may benefit from enhanced flavor with age.

Talking of aging wine, does wine expire? Yes, wine can expire. However, regarding the red wines, these inviting dark-colored drinks can remain enjoyable for up to two to three years after expiration.

Red wine glass bottle

How Long is White Wine Good After Opening?

White wine can last for three to five days after opening. 

Notably, full-bodied whites are prone to oxidization more quickly than their lighter counterparts. This situation occurs because of the additional oxygen exposure they receive during the aging process before bottling. They include oaked Chardonnay, Muscat, and White Rioja. Storing them with a vacuum-sealed cork in the fridge is advisable to preserve them better.

Regarding light white wine, a prolonged lifespan is a crucial advantage of its delectable flavor. When stored correctly in the refrigerator and sealed, this wine can remain flavorful and fresh for up to a week. 

However, minor changes may occur in the wine’s taste and crispness after the bottle gets opened due to oxidation.

Our Red Wine Storing Tips

The Dos

Before you store that bottle of red for the night, take a few moments to learn the basics of keeping opened wine fresh to understand why refrigeration is a good idea. The main reason is that oxygen exposure will cause red wine to turn into vinegar, and the goal is to keep that from happening. 

Ensure you cork the bottle correctly after each pour to minimize oxygen’s effects. Also, keep your bottle of opened wine in your refrigerator to further reduce the chances of oxidation. Cold temperatures slow the oxidation process and help the wine last a few days longer.

Lastly, you can get a variety of gadgets available to help you preserve your favorite red wine. They range from unique stoppers to all-in-one wine storage systems. So, you have various options to keep oxygen out of the bottle so that you can savor the exact red wine for days or even weeks to come!

The Don’ts

Please don’t put an opened bottle of red wine on its side. Though one of the best ways to store it is to lay it flat to keep the cork moist, this only applies to unopened bottles. It’s best to keep the already opened bottle upright in the fridge since it minimizes the surface area exposed to oxygen and offers better preservation of the wine. 

Also, one way to store opened red wine is to ensure it does not experience drastic temperature changes. This move can be difficult after refrigerating your wine, but bringing the bottle back to room temperature is possible without compromising its quality. 

To do this, place the wine in a bowl of lukewarm water until the temperature reaches between 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit (15.6 to 21.1 degrees Celsius). You can also decant it to raise its temperature gradually.

As a further precaution, refrain from decanting the whole bottle if you do not plan on finishing it soon. Notably, decanting introduces oxygen to the wine leading to its quick discoloration. Instead, pour one glass at a time into another glass to aerate it to the desired taste without sacrificing the condition of the wine.

Red Wine Cultivars That Stay Fresher for Longer

Are there opened red wine varieties that stay fresh longer than others? The answer is yes.

Wines with lower tannin levels, such as Pinot Noir and Grenache, usually last only two to three days in the refrigerator. On the other hand, heavier ones, like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Syrah, and Shiraz, can last up to five days.

How to Know Red Wine Is Off

To find out if a wine has gone bad, it is best to rely on your senses: smell, taste, and sight. 

Notably, a sour or strange scent, an odd taste, or a brownish color can all be signs that the wine has spoiled. So, it is best not to risk drinking it, as bad wine can ruin your experience but not necessarily put your health at risk.

Glasses of red wine

Final Verdict

Please never throw your remaining red wine away. Instead, always utilize the tips you’ve learned to keep it fresh so you can enjoy it tomorrow.

Lastly, don’t forget to seek the expertise of a sommelier or wine retailer. They can tell you the best way to store a particular bottle of wine and suggest bottles based on your tastes and drinking preferences. Help from a knowledgeable person is essential to experiencing wine to its fullest potential.