If you’re anything like me, then you have quite the wine collection; and if you’re also like me, then it seems that there are times when one bottle just won’t cut it.
For these moments, I find myself opening up two bottles of my favorite red wine and enjoying them together over an evening with friends or family. I know it’s probably not the best idea, but that doesn’t stop me from doing it anyway!
Table of Contents
- Why Opened Cabernet Sauvignon Goes Bad?
- How Long Does Cabernet Sauvignon Last?
- How To Store Cabernet Sauvignon After Opening? [Keep It Fresh]
- Do You Refrigerate Cabernet Sauvignon After Opening?
- How Do You Drink a Cabernet Sauvignon?
- Closing Thoughts
Why Opened Cabernet Sauvignon Goes Bad?
Storing wine is more than simply keeping it away from light, heat, and air. If you want to get maximum value out of your bottle of red, here are some things to keep in mind. Cabernet Sauvignon’s natural tannins oxidize and become bitter when exposed to oxygen for long periods of time.
While storing your open bottle in a cool, dark place will protect it from sunlight, it may also be subjected to temperature fluctuations which could affect its flavor over time. A dedicated wine fridge can help eliminate these two issues with one purchase.
But if you don’t have one or are unwilling to make that investment, you can use a few other tricks instead.
How Long Does Cabernet Sauvignon Last?
Like all red wines, Cabernet Sauvignon generally ages 2-3 weeks after its opening, although some drinkers prefer to keep it for up to 6 months.
If you plan on sipping a bottle over several days, transfer your Cab into a smaller bottle and drink small amounts each day (1-2 glasses) so you don’t have to waste any wine.
Because of its higher tannin content, Cab can be more difficult than other wines to pair with food (although many people enjoy pairing it with steak). But if you’re going to open a whole bottle at once, consider storing it in an ice bucket with an ice block or wrapping it in towels.
#Basics After Opening
After opening, Cabernet Sauvignon is recommended to be served within two hours. The most common method for keeping wine fresh after it has been opened is to pour out about half of a bottle, then keep the cork moistened and recorked tightly.
This works well if you know that you will drink all of what’s left within 24 hours; otherwise, a plastic or vacuum wine stopper may work better.
How To Store Cabernet Sauvignon After Opening? [Keep It Fresh]
Red wine is a beverage that should be stored in a cool, dark place to protect its flavor and allow it to continue developing with age.
One of the most common mistakes among amateur wine drinkers is storing their red wine in direct sunlight or even next to a window, which can cause it to lose its freshness and unique bouquet quickly.
However, sometimes you have just one glass of leftover Cabernet Sauvignon leftover from dinner, or you’ve bought too much for an upcoming party but are unsure whether it will still be fresh enough when you need it.
So, how do you know when your wine has gone bad? And what’s worse — what will happen if you drink a bottle that’s off?
#Light Matters: Don’t Store in Direct Sunlight
The longer your wine is exposed to light, whether in a bottle or glass, the more quickly it can break down. Cabernet Sauvignon has a high pH level, so it breaks down more easily. You want to keep it covered in a dark place like a pantry or cabinet.
Some wineries wrap their bottles in special foil that filters out all kinds of visible and UV light. Keep away from heat: Like sunlight, extreme temperatures speed up oxidation.
So avoid hot cabinets and direct sunlight on countertops, and don’t put your open bottle of red on top of your oven while you cook dinner! Store properly upright: The cork isn’t just there for decoration—it’s there to protect your wine from air entering through the top of the bottle.
#Temperature Matters Too: Room temperature is Best
The ideal temperature for storing open wine is about 65 degrees F. (18 degrees C.). However, some people prefer their wine chilled or even a little cooler.
A range between 55 and 64 degrees F. (13 to 18 degrees C.) is also acceptable, although the wine will age more slowly in these conditions and might take on a stewed character over time.
If you store your opened Cabernet Sauvignon below 50 degrees F., it may begin to turn chalky and tannic as certain compounds called colloids bind together and make the flavor harsh.
#Store Upright and Try Not to Move Around Too Much
While it’s always important to store wine upright, that becomes even more of a priority when a bottle is already open. Gases that are introduced to an already-opened bottle will affect flavor, so try not to move around your Cab too much.
If you must move it to another part of your home, use as many carriers and padding as possible so you don’t jostle it too much. Ideally, open bottles of wine should be finished in three days or less.
If your Cab has been opened for four or five days and is starting to develop oxidation and strange flavors—maybe think about throwing it out instead of drinking it.
#Avoid closing the Lid Completely
If you close your wine with a cork, leave it slightly open. This will prevent air from leaking into your wine and drying it out.
If you use a screw cap, do not apply too much pressure to create an airtight seal; simply press it down until you hear a click or feel it fit snugly over the top of your bottle. Too much force can damage both the wine and the container.
Do You Refrigerate Cabernet Sauvignon After Opening?
If you are at a party and cannot finish your bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon, do you put it in the fridge when you get home? Some people do, and others don’t. However, there is a proper way to store an open bottle of wine that might not be common knowledge.
Cabernet should not be placed in a refrigerator after opening because it will change its character from wine to vinegar.
How Do You Drink a Cabernet Sauvignon?
If you are storing a bottle of red wine and it is open, do not just re-cork it and put it in your refrigerator. This will kill some of its flavors and make it less enjoyable when you drink it. You also don’t want to keep an opened bottle on your counter or bar as the light will damage its flavor.
The best way to store an opened Cabernet Sauvignon is in a wine cooler or refrigerator so that any moisture condensation can be removed without damaging the flavor or integrity of your wine.
You can read more about its serving temperature and other key elements while serving this wine here on this post.
To further protect against light damage, place a piece of tape over both sides of your opened Cabernet Sauvignon’s cork before you store it in a cool dark location out of direct sunlight.
Your wine bottle isn’t going to drink itself, and neither are you. The next time you have a glass of Cab, do yourself a favor and ensure it’s in proper storage conditions. You’ll be able to enjoy it longer with no problems or regrets.