It’s a question that has plagued humanity for centuries: How do you keep red wine from turning into vinegar? While the answer is still not fully understood, scientists have discovered some methods that seem to work.
This article will explore those methods and determine which one is the best.
The interaction of red wine and oxygen
Before we get into the methods of how to keep red wine after opening, it’s essential to understand a bit about how wine works. Wine is basically a type of fruit juice, and like all fruit juices, it contains sugar.
Yeast cells consume that sugar and produce carbon dioxide, gas, and alcohol. The carbon dioxide gas creates bubbles in sparkling wines, while the alcohol makes wine intoxicating.
One of the things that makes wine so unique is its interaction with oxygen. Oxygen is required for yeast cells to convert sugar into alcohol, and it’s also responsible for the flavor and aroma of the wine.
That’s why wine tastes different when you drink it from a glass than when you drink it from a bottle – the oxygen has had more time to interact with the wine in the glass.
The same is true for wine that’s been open for a while. The oxygen in the air will interact with the wine, and over time, this interaction will change the flavor of the wine. Unfortunately, in most cases, this change is not for the better.
The wine will become more acidic and less fruity.
How to keep red wine after opening: 6 proven methods
A few different methods have been proposed. Let’s look at a few of them and see how well they work.
1. Use a vacuum pump to remove air from the bottle
One way to keep red wine fresh is to use a vacuum pump to remove all the air from the bottle. This method is based on oxygen being required for yeast cells to convert sugar into alcohol. By removing the oxygen, you’re preventing the wine from aging.
Many people swear by this method, but there’s no scientific evidence that it works. In fact, a study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that vacuum packing did not extend the shelf life of red wine.
2. Store red wine in a refrigerator
Another popular method for preserving red wine is to store it in a refrigerator. The cold temperatures will slow down the interaction between wine and oxygen, which can help keep the wine from turning sour.
The cold temperatures can cause the wine to lose its flavor and aroma. So if you’re planning on storing red wine for an extended period, this may not be the best option.
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3. Add an inert gas to the bottle
Another answer to the question how to keep red wine after opening is to add inert gas to the bottle, such as nitrogen or carbon dioxide. This will create a blanket of gas that will prevent oxygen from interacting with the wine.
This method works, but it has the identical drawback as storage in a refrigerator – it can cause the wine to lose some of its flavor and aroma.
4. Use a wine preserver
There are several different products on the market that claim to preserve red wine, and they work in various ways. For example, some use vacuum pumps to remove air from the bottle.
In contrast, others add inert gases or chemicals that prevent oxygen from interacting with the wine.
The best way to find out if a product works is to read reviews from other users. But keep in mind that even if a product gets good reviews, it may not work for everyone.
5. Take advantage of smaller bottles
One way to keep red wine fresh is to buy it in smaller bottles. The larger the bottle, the more oxygen there is in proportion to the wine, and this can cause the wine to turn sour more quickly.
So if you’re planning on storing red wine for an extended time after opening it, it’s best to buy it in small bottles. This way, you can drink it before it has a chance to turn sour.
6. Drink it right away!
Of course, the best way to keep red wine from turning into vinegar is to drink it right away! This may not be practical for everyone, but if you can drink a bottle of wine within a day or two of opening it, you’ll be fine.
Choose your wine wisely
When choosing a red wine that will last after being opened, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. First of all, you’ll want to choose a wine that’s high in acidity. This is because wines with high acidity levels are less likely to turn sour when exposed to oxygen.
Second, you’ll want to choose a wine that’s been properly stored. A wine that’s been stored in a cool, dark place is less likely to turn sour than wine that’s been stored in a warm, sunny location.
Finally, you’ll want to choose a wine that’s not too old. Older wines are more likely to turn sour than younger wines. So if you’re planning on storing red wine for an extended period after opening, it’s best to choose a younger wine.
Remember, the best way how to keep red wine after opening is to drink it right away! But if you can’t do that, you can use a few other methods to prolong its life.
Just be sure to choose your wine wisely and store it properly, and you’ll be able to enjoy it for days after opening it.
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How long can you keep a bottle of red wine once opened?
The answer to this question depends on several factors, including the type of wine, the storage conditions, and the amount of oxygen exposed to the wine. In general, you can expect a bottle of red wine to last for about 3-5 days after being opened.
How do you know if red wine has gone bad?
The easiest way to tell if red wine has gone bad is to smell it. If it smells sour or vinegary, then it’s probably gone bad. You can also taste the wine to see if it’s sour. If it is, then it’s definitely gone bad.
Should you put red wine in the fridge?
It’s not necessary to put red wine in the fridge, but it can help to extend its shelf life. The main downside of refrigerating red wine is that it can cause the wine to lose some of its flavor and aroma.