How long does champagne last once opened?
On nights when you don’t want to drink the whole bottle, you might find yourself wondering, does champagne go off? Or how long does wine last once opened? Keep the sparkle in your champagne and extend the shelf life of your wine long after the bottle is opened with this useful guide.
There are many reasons you might find yourself, at the end of the night, with a half-drunk bottle beside you. Perhaps you only wanted to share one or two glasses with a friend, or maybe you needed just a splash for your signature dish. So how do you keep wine fresh and champagne effervescent for the next day and beyond?
1. Invest in a stopper
For all styles of wine, exposure to oxygen is the enemy, dulling the aromas and flavours and, in the case of champagne, killing the bubbles. While many people swear by sticking the handle of a spoon – preferably silver – into the neck of a champagne bottle, a far more reliable method of preserving the fizz is to use a purpose-made airtight bottle stopper.
2. Store open bottles in the fridge
Carbon dioxide, which gives champagne its fizz, is more soluble in colder liquid, so champagne will retain its sparkle better in the fridge. The same is true for wine. By recorking and refrigerating a half-finished bottle of red, white or rosé, you’ll limit its exposure to oxygen, heat and light, which can take wine from being drinkable the next day to not. When you do pour a next-day glass, allow enough time for the wine to return to its optimum drinking temperature.
3. Consider how long wine lasts after opening
Generally speaking, wine lasts between two and five days, while champagne keeps its fizz for one to three days. Give it a taste as every wine is different – a less stable natural wine might not last the day, whereas a highly tannic red could be good for up to a week. How do you know if a wine has gone off? Look for signs that it’s become oxidised – are the fruit aromas and flavours dull, or has the colour dimmed or gained a brown tinge?
4. What to do if your wine goes off
If you follow the steps above but still don’t manage to find time to drink the remainder, all is not lost. Give it a taste – if it’s still drinkable and not vinegary then you can use it in cooking.