How Long Does Red Wine Last in the Fridge?

There are a few tips to prolong the shelf life of red wine, including decanting it and storing fortified wines. In addition, you should follow certain storage procedures to avoid oxygenation. This article will discuss some of these tips. If you’re wondering how long a bottle of wine should stay in the fridge, keep reading! This article will answer the question, “How long does red wine last in the fridge?”

Red Wine

How Long does Red Wine Last in the Fridge?

As a general rule, red wine can last for 2 to 5 days if kept open and secured with a cork or wine stopper in a cold, dark place.

The longer the red wine will last, the more tannic and acidic it will be. Tannin, a substance in grape seeds, stems, and skins, aids in protecting wine from oxygenation and improves its capacity to age.

Some grape varietals, like red wines, have more natural tannin than others since white wines are created without skins or seeds.

The red wines Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, and Nebbiolo, naturally have greater tannin levels. Pinot Noir, light red wine with low tannin levels, keeps well for two to three days after opening, whereas higher tannin wines should keep well for up to five days with proper care. Some extremely tannic and acidic wines, or wines that haven’t fully matured, will even get better the next day.

Red wines should be kept in a cooler or a shady, cool area after being opened. The wine should be kept in the refrigerator if you don’t have a chiller rather than leaving it outside in a 70°F (21°C) environment. If you choose not to drink red wine, you can still utilize it in your cuisine.

What Happens When You Uncork a Red Wine Bottle?

Wines are kept in their bottles with little or no contact with the air. The winemakers will remove any remaining air before corking the wine by filling the bottle with an inert gas like nitrogen or argon. The winemakers normally strive for oxygen content in the bottle of less than 1 part per million (PPM).

Very little, if any, oxygen enters after being corked or screwcapped. Whether corks leak air over time has been hotly contested for many years. In the end, researchers found that the typical cork allowed a modest amount of air during the first year but much less after that.

Aeration and oxidation processes start when a wine bottle is opened, which changes the wine’s color and fruity flavor. Additionally, it destroys flavors and results in the loss of sulfur dioxide, a substance that aids in the wine’s preservation.

The process will continue even if the bottle is re-corked because no closure is airtight, and oxygen has already entered the bottle. The good news is that while excessive oxidation is bad for wine, modest amounts of it can be beneficial. When the wine ages in the barrel and bottle, it happens organically.

When a wonderful wine is still too tannic and astringent or hasn’t aged long enough, experts will decant it or let it iterate for a few hours. Mellowing the flavor and allowing unwanted odors to dissipate, doing so enhances the flavor. Another useful technique for aerating wine is to swirl the glass to allow the beverage to “open up” or “breathe.”

Wine experts will open and taste bottles of any quality for a few days to observe how the flavor changes. So long as you limit oxidation, you may be able to drink wine up to a week after opening it under some circumstances.

What are the Causes of Wine Oxidation?

The Amount of Air

It was Exposed to Avoiding air exposure is the key to increasing the life of wine. When a bottle is opened and promptly corked again, far less air is present than when the bottle is left open or decanted.

There is far less air in a nearly full re-corked bottle than in a practically empty one. On the other hand, an opened bottle placed on its side in the refrigerator increases the surface area where air can contact it significantly.

Instead of leaving a bottle exposed, a lost cork should be wrapped with foil or plastic wrap. There is no general rule, but the longer the wine is exposed to the air, the better it will taste.

The Location of Wine Bottle Storage

Wine oxidation is delayed by colder temperatures and increased by heat. Light exposure is also important. Clear and green bottles can both easily pass through UV radiation. They cause a sulfur-releasing reaction, changing the wine’s fragrance, an essential element of its flavor.

Bottles of red wine that have been opened should be stored in the fridge. To prevent oxidation, the interior is both cold and dark.

Red wines should be allowed to sit at room temperature for a few minutes before consumption if you are concerned about drinking them too cold. If you’re pressed for time, reheat them for five seconds in the microwave.

The Flavor Profile of the Wine

Because acids and tannins need to be softened before they taste their best, wines with higher tannin or acid content typically last longer. Any wine may be acidic; you may tell by how it tastes zingy, snappy, or zippy.

Tannins are produced during the wine-making process from the grape skins; as a result, they are typically present in red wine, some rosé, and white wines. They are to blame for the flavor’s dry aftertaste.

Let’s say you think a wine is too tannic or acidic. If so, there’s a strong possibility you’ll enjoy it a lot more the following day because oxidation tends to soften such traits.

Generally, Natural and organic wines have more acidity, tannins, and less apparent sweetness, allowing them to age longer than their commercially produced counterparts.

On the other hand, fruit flavors deteriorate first, so wines that seem fruity and sweet on day one usually lose their appeal the following day.

If the Wine is Matured in Oak Barrels

Oak barrel-aged wines have a vanilla aroma and a silky smoothness on the taste. When balancing strong, jam-like, fruity flavors and higher alcohol levels, oak can be helpful.

Oaky wine, however, may rapidly taste like wood water since fruit flavors in a wine are the first to disappear.

The Variety of Grapes Used in Wine Production

Pinot Noir grapes, in particular, have a reputation for being delicate. Red Burgundy’s signature grape is so picky that even bottles from well-known winemakers may have flaws, earning it the nickname “heartbreak wine.”

Within a single case of wine, there might be a significant quality difference. Other red wines made from lighter red grapes could also age more quickly.

Contrarily, the most tannic grapes tend to be Cabernet Sauvignon, Brunello, Barolos, and Syrah, which result in the most powerful wines. Although these wines are great, a few days of oxidation might make them even better.

How Should I Store an Open Bottle of Red Wine?

Re-cork the wine after each serving into your glass. Keep the open wine bottle at room temperature and out of the light.

In most circumstances, a refrigerator helps keep red wines fresher for longer. Hold the wine upright to minimize the surface area exposed to oxygen to achieve the greatest results.

When Red Wine is Opened, Can it be Refrigerated or Frozen?

Yes, you can both freeze and refrigerate wine. The reduced temperature will also slow the oxidation. An open bottle is kept in a dark, temperature-controlled environment when placed in the refrigerator.

If you live in a nation with a hotter climate and don’t have access to a chiller or wine refrigerator, you can keep a corked but unfinished bottle in the refrigerator. Just keep in mind to bring it out an hour before serving to let it warm up.

Why does Red Wine Go Bad After Being Opened?

After being opened, wine can degrade in two different ways. In the first step, acetic acid bacteria break down the alcohol in wine to produce acetic acid and acetaldehyde. As a result, the wine has a sharp, vinegar-like aroma.

Additionally, the alcohol may oxidize, giving the wine a nutty, bruised fruit flavor that detracts from its fresh and fruity characteristics. Since both are chemical processes, the cooler the wine is stored, the slower the reactions will be.

How to Recognize a Bad Bottle of Wine After Opening?

Pour a little bit into your glass, then look for these things:


The wine seems foggy and forms a film within the bottle. Many wines start murky, but if they start clear and turn cloudy, this could point to microbial activity inside the bottle.

Like an apple, wine ages when exposed to oxygen starts to brown and changes its hits. Sits wonderful “tawny” wines are available, so wine browning isn’t always bad. However, it will let you know how much oxidative damage the wine has undergone.

It Might Contain a Few Tiny Bubbles

You just made sparkling wine. Sadly, it won’t taste as good as Champagne; it will be oddly acidic and spritz. The second fermentation in the bottle occurred accidentally, which is why there are bubbles.


The smell of a wine bottle that has gone bad from exposure is abrasive and unpleasant. It will have a sour, medicinal scent similar to vinegar, nail polish remover, or paint thinner.

When wine is exposed to heat and oxygen, bacteria grow and create acetic acid and acetaldehyde, which results in these odors.

Amount of Taste

While consuming wine that has “gone bad” won’t harm you, it’s probably not a smart idea. The harsh acidic flavor of bad wine, which results from being left open, is analogous to vinegar.

It probably will also be similar to how horseradish burns your nasal passages. It frequently tastes like caramelized applesauce as a result of the oxidation.

Can You Get Sick from Drinking Wine that has Turned Bad?

Older wines are safe to consume, unlike most things sitting in your fridge for a week. That bottle may have lost some of its flavor, taste, and brightness, but it is up to you whether or not you will still enjoy it.

There are no such things as expiration dates when it comes to wine. Wine ages gradually and will keep aging if stored properly. It’s not like a bottle of milk that needs to be thrown away after its expiration date.

You can do the three-step test on any opened bottles of wine in your refrigerator that appear suspect by following the above instructions. If it fails every test, then perhaps it’s time to let it go.

What is the Red Wine Health Benefits?

Any alcoholic beverage consumed in moderation may have the same effect because alcohol can be linked to some of the advantages of red wine. Other research focuses on the distinctive qualities of red wine, many of which have not yet been thoroughly investigated.

Researchers have identified the following potential advantages of drinking red wine for health:

The Management of Blood Pressure

The polyphenols in red wine may reduce blood pressure. Red wine extract was found to lower blood pressure in a trial of patients with mildly elevated blood pressure, and both systolic and diastolic pressures improved.

The polyphenols in red wine were determined to be accountable by the study. According to scientists, red wine consumption is not a “miracle cure-all,” but it may contribute to a healthy heart.

Circulatory Health

Although other scientists disagree, there is growing proof that red wine is good for your heart. All wines include ethanol, which has certain advantages. Red wine’s polyphenols and ethanol may combine to have beneficial effects on the heart and circulatory system. Those with heart problems brought on by narrowed blood vessels may benefit the most.

Reference: The health benefits of wine


The shelf life of red wine depends on two factors: tannicity and acidity. Tannins are compounds in grape seeds and stem that help preserves the wine and increase its age-ability. Higher tannin wines like Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are more stable and can last five to six days once opened. However, they may taste better if they are open for a day or two after uncorking. White wines, on the other hand, have no skins.