Nov 24 2009
If wine is left out too long, it can go bad. There are ways to preserve wine for few days or longer after opening.
Most people can not tell if a vino was left out too long anyway, so recorking the bottle and putting it in the fridge really isn’t a bad idea.
After you open a bottle, it is important to put the cork back in as soon as possible; oxygen is the enemy. Oxygen causes it to oxidize. If the cork is returned quickly, the vino should stay good in the fridge for a few days.
According to popsci.com, “Bacteria naturally present in grapes can turn either the sugars in grape juice or the alcohol in wine into acetic acid, giving it a vinegar taste (and eventually producing a wine vinegar). However, these bacteria need oxygen to grow. Wine’s fermentation process is usually oxygen-free because of the large amount of carbon dioxide produced when yeasts turn sugars into alcohol. Uncorking the bottle introduces oxygen to feed the bacteria, and the flavor begins to change immediately. Not all changes are undesirable: Expensive red wines, in particular, are said to improve in the decanter and in the glass over a short period. Some white wines oxidize in the bottle over years, producing a rich rather than sour quality.”
If you can, it is better just to finish the bottle, but most wine can be saved for a few days.
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