Log In / Join Now

Ask Dr. Vinny



Do you have a question for Dr. Vinny? Ask it here...

Dr. Vinny,

Someone uncorked my wine without me knowing it and now it has been opened for almost 24 hours! Is there anything I can I do to save it?

—Worried Wine Lover, Warrensburg, Mo.

Dear Worried Wine Lover … if that’s your real name,

It doesn’t matter if the cork was pulled by accident or on purpose, once that seal is broken, your wine is exposed to oxygen. That accelerates the processes of oxidation and evaporation, which is what will cause your wine to fade.

How quickly that happens depends on how much surface area the wine has—the more, the faster. Because surface area matters, if there’s a smaller container you can transfer the wine into that you can seal tight, do that. I know some folks who also store their wine in the freezer, which should be safe as long as you leave enough room for the inevitable expansion. If you’re not in the mood for that, sticking an open bottle in a refrigerator—even a red one—will slow down its fading.

Younger wines should remain more robust than older wines, and your own tolerance will come into play. I usually notice wines becoming unpleasant after a day or so, but I know some people can nurse a bottle for a week or more.

—Dr. Vinny

Wine Basics

We break down the basics—how to taste, serve, store and more. Plus:
» Maps of major wine regions
» Grape variety characteristics

How-to Videos

Learn to taste wine like a pro, pull a cork with flair, get great wine service in a restaurant and more

Wine Spectator School: All courses are FREE for WineSpectator.com Members

Learn from the experts and get the most out of each sip. Take one of our online courses or take them all—from the ABCs of Tasting to in-depth seminars on Food Pairing, California Cabernet, Bordeaux, Tuscany, Sensory Evaluation and more.

Browse our course catalog
Check out the professional wine sales and service courses
Learn Wine Forum: Got questions? Get answers


WineRatings+ app: Download now for 340,000+ ratings.