storing wine

Leftover wine, you say? What is that, anyway? It’s easy to polish off a bottle of wine with a friend—after all, it’s only a couple of glasses each. But what if it’s a school night? What if you’re flying solo and just want one glass? Wine tends to spoil when exposed to oxygen, and it’s always a sad moment when you realize that a bottle’s gone off because you’ve been too busy adulting.

Luckily, there are ways to preserve wine that ensure not a drop is wasted! Here are a few top tips on how to extend the life of leftover wine.

1. Coravin: A Must-Have for Any Serious Wine Collector

Do you ever look at your wine collection, pull out a prized bottle, and wish you had an occasion to open it and enjoy? Coravin makes it possible!

Coravin is an incredible invention. It’s a hand-held contraption that allows you to access the wine in the bottle without pulling the cork. You attach the device to the top of your bottle, drive a needle through the cork, and as you pour, you’ll displace the oxygen in the bottle with argon, an inert gas that will preserve the leftover wine for six months or more. Coravin is an essential item for any wine collector as it makes it possible for you to enjoy a glass of your favorites without having to finish the bottle.

Coravin also offers screwcap adapters for non-cork closures and makes preservation systems for sparkling wine too. It’s not cheap, but it will pay for itself in enjoyment and indulgence many times over.

2. Vacu Vin: The Budget Alternative

Vacu Vin and other devices like it use a special stopper and pump. When you’re done with your bottle, you’ll use the special stopper instead of a cork, place the pump over the stopper and pump the oxygen out of the bottle. When used properly, a Vacu Vin device will extend the life of your wine by a week or two. Best of all, you can pick up a set for under $30, and they’re widely available at most wine stores or culinary shops.

3. Private Preserve Wine Preserver: Cheap, Cheerful, Easy-Peasy

Private Preserve is an aerosol can of inert gas that you spray onto the surface of the wine in the bottle. It’s cheap, easy to use, and there are no extra parts or accessories to lose. A few sprays before you seal up your bottle will preserve the wine for a week or more, depending on your storage conditions. One caveat with Private Preserve is that you must stand your bottle upright to work properly. Agitating the bottle will cause the blanket of gas to disperse.

A few bonus tips for preserving wine:

  • Storing open wine in the fridge will slow down spoilage in the short term.
  • The less wine in the bottle, the faster it will spoil, even with a Coravin.
  • Some wines do better than others with the above methods. Zinfandel, pinot noir, and aromatic whites tend to lose their freshness quickly.

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