Most people know that if wine is stored properly it can last for years and even decades without spoiling, but how long does wine last after the bottle has been opened? Dr. John McTavish, Ph.D., C.S.W. is a sommelier and wine expert and he says “Oxygen is wine’s enemy. The more time that wine is exposed to oxygen after the bottle is opened, the faster it will lose its fruity aromas and flavors and start to go bad.”
For opened bottles of wine, the freshness depends on what kind of wine it is and how much wine is left in the bottle. Dessert wines can last for a week, port wines up to two or three weeks, and “a typical white or red wine should be consumed in three days” according to Natalie Tapken of Bluepoint Hospitality who has received three Wine Spectator awards. The more wine left in the bottle allows for a longer life since there’s less oxygen remaining.
To tell if a wine has gone bad, sparkling wine will lose flavor and carbonation in a few hours and red wine loses its fruity characteristics and just won’t taste as good in a few days. If you want to make your opened wine last longer you can put it in the fridge, store it in a smaller bottle and seal it well. There are also tons of accessories to suck the oxygen out of a wine bottle and reseal it if you want to take that extra step.