What Happens If You Drink Old Wine? (TOP 5 Tips)

Drinking old wine will not make you sick, but it will likely start to taste off or flat after five to seven days, so you won’t get to enjoy the wine’s optimal flavors. Longer than that and it’ll start to taste unpleasant.

  • In most cases, nothing happens if you drink old wine. It probably tastes a little off or flat after a few days to a week in the refrigerator. Alcohol is a preservative, so while the wine deteriorates the longer it’s exposed to oxygen, it’s rare for anything harmful to grow. The same is true for wines you’ve opened and left on the counter.


Can you get sick from drinking old opened wine?

Can Old Wine Make You Sick If the Bottle Is Left Open? Drinking an already-opened bottle of wine will not make you sick. You can usually leave it for at least a few days before the wine starts to taste different. However, we wouldn’t advise you push this too far.

Is it OK to drink old wine?

Although a person can drink a small amount of spoiled wine without fearing the consequences, they should avoid drinking large amounts of it. Typically, wine spoilage occurs due to oxidation, meaning that the wine may turn to vinegar. Although it may taste unpleasant, it is unlikely to cause harm.

What happens if you eat old wine?

Expired alcohol doesn’t make you sick. If you drink liquor after it’s been open for more than a year, you generally only risk a duller taste. Flat beer typically tastes off and may upset your stomach, whereas spoiled wine usually tastes vinegary or nutty but isn’t harmful.

Can you get food poisoning from wine?

You cannot get food poisoning from a bad bottle of white wine. Bad white wine becomes vinegar. White wine is antimicrobial and kills most of the bacteria that can cause food poisoning.

Can old wine give you diarrhea?

Alcohol can also irritate your digestive tract, worsening diarrhea. Scientists have found this occurs most often with wine, which tends to kill off helpful bacteria in the intestines. The bacteria will recolonize and normal digestion will be restored when alcohol consumption stops and normal eating resumes.

Will oxidized wine get you drunk?

Drinking oxidized wine is no different from consuming flat soda or stale bread. The chemical makeup has altered slightly, but there are no compounds added that would prevent you from being able to drink a glass. Studies have also shown that acetaldehyde naturally breaks down in the human body without adverse effects.

Can red wine spoil?

Red wine can and frequently does go bad, although depending on the type and the quality, it’s more suited to ageing in the bottle than white wine so, on occasion, it can actually taste better 10 years down the line rather than 10 minutes after purchasing.

What does spoiled wine taste like?

A wine that has gone bad from being left open will have a sharp sour flavor similar to vinegar that will often burn your nasal passages in a similar way to horseradish. It will also commonly have caramelized applesauce-like flavors (aka “Sherried” flavors) from the oxidation.

How long does wine last once open?

Answer: Most wines last open for only about 3–5 days before they start to go bad. Of course, this greatly depends on the type of wine! Find out more about this below. Don’t worry though, “spoiled” wine is essentially just vinegar, so it’s not going to harm you.

Does closed wine go bad?

Though unopened wine has a longer shelf life than opened wine, it can go bad. Unopened wine can be consumed past its printed expiration date if it smells and tastes OK. It’s important to remember that the shelf life of unopened wine depends on the type of wine, as well as how well it’s stored.

How do you know if a bottle of wine is bad?

Your Bottle of Wine Might Be Bad If:

  1. The smell is off.
  2. The red wine tastes sweet.
  3. The cork is pushed out slightly from the bottle.
  4. The wine is a brownish color.
  5. You detect astringent or chemically flavors.
  6. It tastes fizzy, but it’s not a sparkling wine.

Can bad alcohol make you sick?

Alcohol increases the production of stomach acid and delays stomach emptying. Any of these factors can cause abdominal pain, nausea or vomiting. Alcohol can cause your blood sugar to fall. If your blood sugar dips too low, you may experience fatigue, weakness, shakiness, mood disturbances and even seizures.

Where is the expiration date on wine?

If you take a close look at a boxed wine, you’ll most likely see a “best-by” date, probably stamped on the bottom or side of the box. This expiration date is typically within a year or so from the time the wine was packaged.

Can drinking an old wine make you sick?

Greetings, everyone! My name is Dr. Vinifera, but you can call me Vinny if you like. Ask me your most difficult wine questions, ranging from the nuances of etiquette to the complexities of winemaking science. Not to worry, I’m no wine connoisseur; you can also come to me with those “stupid questions” that you’re too embarrassed to ask your wine geek buddies. Hope you find my responses to be instructive, empowering, and perhaps humorous in some way. Please remember to visit my frequently asked questions page as well as my whole archive for all of my Q A masterpieces.



You can absolutely become unwell if you consume an excessive amount of port—or any other alcoholic beverage, for that matter.

  1. Nonetheless, it appears as though you’re questioning whether a wine would rot as it ages, and the answer is no.
  2. Several of the greatest wines I’ve ever tasted have been far more age-old than I am, including a Port that was far more age-old than I will likely ever be.
  3. The worst-case scenario would be a bottle of wine that hasn’t matured well and is simply old in the bottle.
  4. It is not hazardous, but it will not be pleasant to consume.
  5. —Vinny, the doctor

When Good Wine Goes Bad: Can Old Wine Make You Sick?

Wine enthusiasts receive a thrill at the possibility of maturing a bottle of wine. Our favorite part about investing is the prospect of purchasing something and then watching as its value grows over time. Is it possible to become ill from drinking old wine? In this post, we’ll go through the dos and don’ts of wine aging and storage, which will help you determine whether or not you should drink that weird, dusty old bottle of wine you found in the cellar. You may rely on us to walk you through the process of aging a bottle of wine, or to tell you if the opened bottle of wine you left in the fridge last night is safe to drink today.

Why You Shouldn’t Age All Wine

It is not true that every wine improves from maturing, contrary to common assumption. In reality, only a very small percentage of wines made will be acceptable for aging – just a pitiful 2 percent of all wines produced will be eligible for aging. A common concern is that many wine enthusiasts romanticize the concept of saving a really great bottle of wine for a special occasion. Then, when the big birthday or wedding approaches, the wine they’ve been carefully saving becomes ruined and unusable since it has become spoiled.

Those bottles of wine you’ve been saving for your 20th wedding anniversary may start to lose their quality after a year or two of sitting on your shelf.

The fact that most bottles of wine are sealed with a cork means that the cork will degrade with time, allowing air to enter into the bottle of wine.

What is our recommendation? Drink your store-bought wine as soon as possible after purchasing it. You should avoid taking any chances because it is likely to be unsuitable for aging. However, if you are serious about purchasing a bottle for age, we have some suggestions for you.

The Best Wine to Age

If you’re thinking about buying a bottle of wine to age, there are a few things to keep an eye out for:

  • Purchase a wine that has a high amount of acidity. An acidic wine is crucial for achieving a well-balanced taste. Wine might taste boring and “flabby” if it is not present. Because acid degrades with age, it is important to choose a wine that is rich in acidity to age. Look for a wine with a high concentration of tannins. In wine, tannins are natural preservatives of color and flavor that will aid in the preservation of your wine as it ages. Dessert wines, sweet wines, and wines that are just heavy in sugar are all excellent choices for aging. A excellent preserver, similar to how it works with handmade jams and jellies, is provided by the high sugar concentration. Keep a close eye out for volatile acids. These might cause your aging expectations to be dashed. Acetic acid is a naturally occurring acid that may be found in wine and other beverages. However, while its presence is not a bad thing, it is also considered a volatile acid, so ask your sommelier about the volatile acid levels in the wine before purchasing it Finally, wines with extremely high levels of alcohol are appropriate for maturing in barrels. Consider wines with an alcoholic content greater than 15 percent, such as Port.

How To Tell If Wine Has Gone Bad

Is it possible to become sick from drinking old wine? No, not in the traditional sense. There’s nothing particularly heinous hiding in a bottle of poorly aged wine that would send you racing to the next emergency hospital. The liquid that may come out of that bottle, on the other hand, could make you feel nauseous simply because of the color and smell. In addition, the flavor will be quite awful. After a bottle of wine has been matured for a while, you may want to give it one last thorough inspection before serving it to yourself.


Is it possible to become ill by drinking old wine. Honestly, I don’t believe that. Unfortunately, there is nothing particularly horrifying hiding in a bottle of poorly aged wine that would send you racing to the nearest emergency department. But just by looking at the hue and smell of the liquid that may flow out of that bottle, you might get sick. In addition, the flavor will be quite disagreeable. It is recommended that you thoroughly inspect a bottle of wine that has been aged before pouring yourself a drink.


When you first open your bottle, take a short whiff to ensure that it is free of contaminants before pouring. If your wine is “corked” or has “cork taint,” it will smell like wet cardboard or even wet dog if it is infected with the disease. Additionally, your nose can tell you whether or not the wine has oxidized. Keep an eye out for strong acidic scents that are akin to nail polish remover.


At the end of the process, if you’re courageous enough, you may take a sip to see how the wine tastes. Generally, a spoiled bottle of wine will feel “flabby” in the tongue, the tastes will be considerably sharper, and the whole experience will be boring and uninspired.

The Best Way to Store Wine

Learn how to properly store your wine to avoid your wine succumbing to this destiny. Our wine storage advice is extensive, but here are a few pointers to keep in mind:

Keep Your Bottles Horizontal

If you leave your bottle upright, it is possible that the cork can dry out. A dry cork is more likely to allow air to enter the wine, oxidizing it and destroying the subtle nuances in the process. Investing in a nice wine rack is a simple method to keep your bottles upright and organized.

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Keep Temperatures Low and Constant

Wine is quite sensitive to temperature fluctuations. When storing your wine, choose a location that is cool, dark, and away from direct sunlight.

Beware of Vibrations

If wine were a person, it would have an extremely sensitive soul, according to the experts. It despises excessive movement since it might disrupt the sediment and induce premature aging of the organism. Make sure to keep your collection away from loud speakers and a noisy refrigerator, and try not to shake them.

Can Old Wine Make You Sick If the Bottle Is Left Open?

Drinking wine from a bottle that has previously been opened will not make you sick. It is normally possible to leave it for at least a few days before the wine begins to change in flavor. However, we do not recommend that you go too far with this. It is possible that drinking from a bottle that has been open for more than a week can leave you with an unpleasant taste in your mouth. Both red and white wines should be stored in the refrigerator to extend the shelf life of open bottles of wine.

Attempting to reinsert the cork back into the bottle, or investing in a decent wine stopper, is also a good idea while drinking wine. This will form a seal around the opening of the bottle, which should help to block oxygen from getting inside.

Drink Wine How It Was Intended: Fresh and Young

Hopefully, we were able to ease your concerns about consuming vintage wines. Drinking wine that has passed its prime will not harm you, despite the fact that it may not taste great. It’s important to remember that you’re better off not attempting to age your wine. Because there are so few bottles that benefit from age, you may wind up spoiling a perfectly wonderful bottle. If you’re eager to give it a shot, search for wines that are heavy in acidity, alcohol, tannins, and sugar, and store them correctly to avoid spoiling them.

A single-serve glass bottle of Usual Wines keeps you stocked with a fresh dose of red, rose, or brut whenever the mood strikes you.

How long does wine last and the risks of spoiled wine

Wine is a popular alcoholic beverage, but if it is not stored properly or consumed soon, it will go bad and rot. Once opened, wine is usually only good for a couple of days. If it becomes spoiled, the flavor, smell, and consistency may all change. In rare instances, rotten wine might cause a person to become ill. Wine is consumed by a large number of persons of legal drinking age, and data shows that moderate consumption may have health advantages. Several studies have found that a moderate to light intake of wine may be beneficial to one’s heart health, for example.

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend either abstaining from alcohol completely or drinking just in moderation when it comes to children.
  • Drinking one drink is equivalent to drinking a 5-ounce glass of wine with a 12 percent alcohol level.
  • In this post, we’ll talk about how long various wines will last on average.
  • Wine that has not been opened has a longer shelf life than wine that has been opened.
  • When storing wine properly, it may be necessary to preserve it in a cool, dark spot and to turn the bottle on its side to avoid the cork from drying out completely.
  • Bottled white wine should be consumed within 1–2 years
  • Bottle rosé should be consumed within 1–2 years
  • Bottle red wine should be consumed within 2–3 years. Non-vintage sparkling wine has a shelf life of 3–4 years. Vintage sparkling wine can be aged for 5–10 years
  • Fortified wine can be aged for decades.

One to two years for bottle-aged white wine; one to two years for bottle-aged rose wine; two to three years for bottle-aged red wine; and one to three years for bottle-aged champagne Champagne (non-vintage): 3–4 years; Champagne (vintage): 3–4 years Vintage sparkling wine should be consumed within 5–10 years; fortified wine should be consumed within decades; and

  • Sparkling wine should be consumed within 1–2 days
  • White wine should be consumed within 3–5 days
  • Rosé wine should be consumed within 3–5 days
  • Red wine should be consumed between 3–6 days
  • Fortified wine should be consumed within 1–3 weeks

There are a variety of symptoms that a bottle of wine is beginning to go bad. These are some examples:

Changes in color

The color of the wine is the first thing that a person notices while tasting it. If the color of the liquid appears to have changed after the bottle was opened, this might indicate spoiling. In the case of red wine, it may have a brownish tinge to it when it has gone bad; on the other hand, white wine may deepen or become a deep yellow or brownish straw hue when it has gone bad.

Changes in smell

If a bottle of wine has gone bad, a person may be able to detect particular odors. These can include a harsh, vinegar-like stench, a wet odor, or an odor that is comparable to that of a barnyard environment. If the wine has become stale, the scent of the wine may also change. Some people describe the smell of stale wine as having a nuttiness to it, while others claim it smells like burnt marshmallows or applesauce. A bottle of wine may become bad before it is ever opened, which is usually due to a flaw in the winemaking process.

Changes in taste

It is not recommended to consume wine that has gone sour in any way. The practice of tasting a tiny bit of wine is useful in some situations to establish whether or not the wine is still safe to consume. If a bottle of wine has gone bad, the flavor may have altered. Bad wine frequently has a harsh and acidic flavor that is similar to that of vinegar. Because of the strong odor and flavor, it may also cause a little burning sensation in the nasal passages of certain people. A strong chemical taste akin to paint thinner may be present in some situations of sour wine if the wine has gone bad.

Unwanted bubbles in the wine

If bubbles are visible in a still wine, this indicates that the wine is in the process of fermenting. This procedure is mainly caused by a lack of sterilization, and it implies that yeasts may still be active in the wine at the time of tasting.

Loose cork or leakage

If the cork is loose, visible above the rim, or obviously leaking, this may indicate that the bottle has been subjected to heat damage. This damage may result in minor changes to the fragrance and flavor of the wine, as well as a duller appearance and taste as a result of the damage. Despite the fact that a little quantity of damaged wine may be consumed without fear of repercussions, it is recommended that people avoid consuming excessive quantities of it. Typically, wine spoilage happens as a result of oxidation, which means that the wine may convert into vinegar.

Food poisoning, on the other hand, can happen from deterioration caused by bacteria.

The following are typical signs and symptoms of food poisoning:

  • Stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, and dehydration are all possible symptoms.

It is best to just throw away any wine that has gone bad, as it will taste terrible and may make the drinker sick if left to sit.

When preserving wine, people should take into consideration the following factors:

Choose a cool and dark place

It is recommended that you keep your wine in a cool, dry location with a somewhat constant temperature. Temperature fluctuations might have an impact on the quality of the wine. A dark area is the ideal way to keep wine since it protects it from light, which is very crucial.

Store corked bottles horizontally

The practice of placing a bottle on its side ensures that the wine remains in continual touch with the cork, keeping it from drying up over time. If the cork begins to dry up, it may enable air to enter the bottle, which can cause the wine to become stale. Due to the fact that this sort of deterioration may only harm wines in corked bottles, it is recommended that bottles with screw-tops be stored upright.

The right humidity is important

A bottle stored on its side helps the wine to maintain consistent contact with the cork, keeping it from becoming dry. Depending on how quickly the cork dries, it may enable air to enter the bottle, causing the wine to become stale. Due to the fact that this sort of deterioration may only damage wines in corked bottles, bottles with screw-tops can be stored upright.

Consider a wine fridge

Storing a bottle on its side helps the wine to remain in continual touch with the cork, preventing it from drying out. If the cork does dry out, it may enable oxygen to enter the bottle, causing the wine to become stale. Because this sort of deterioration may only occur in corked bottles, it is recommended that bottles with screw-tops be stored upright.

What Happens if You Drink Old Wine?

Perhaps you’ve suddenly discovered an old bottle of wine that’s been languishing in a cellar for a bit longer than you’d like to admit. No wine enthusiast in their right mind would ever want to throw away a great red or crisp white wine, but you might be forgiven if you were anxious about wasting your investment. It’s only prudent to be aware of the potential ramifications of drinking from this dubious bottle before you sit down to enjoy it. Is it possible to become sick from drinking old wine?

  1. Is it possible for Champagne to go bad, and what would happen if you drank old bubbly?
  2. Due to the numerous procedures that might impact (and even harm) the flavor of your bottle, you’ll need to get familiar with the warning indications.
  3. Drinking excessive amounts of wine may have negative consequences, something we wine enthusiasts are all too familiar with.
  4. As a result, one of the first things you’ll need to learn is how to detect whether a bottle of wine has gone off.
  5. Because there are so many variables to consider, there are several things that may go wrong during the procedure.

As a result, we’ll go through the reasons why wine can get too old or go bad for a variety of different causes in this section. Many factors can influence the flavor of a bottle of wine, and there are numerous variables to consider.

How to tell if a wine has gone bad

There are various simple methods for determining whether or not a bottle of wine is too old to drink, and anybody may be effective in utilizing them. A few functional senses will enough to determine when your wine is no longer good for drinking. There are several defects and flaws in red and white wine that may be discovered only by sniffing the beverage; however, you may also be able to identify by sight as well. The presence of rotten wine will also be readily apparent when tasting the beverage, therefore distinguishing between a decent wine and an old one is not difficult to do.

  1. If you find that the color of your wine bottle is browner than you thought, this is a clue that the wine has gone bad, according to the experts.
  2. Neither red nor white wine are exempt from this rule.
  3. When white wine is allowed to age for an extended period of time, it might become brown.
  4. This is a well-known symptom that the contents of your bottle have been exposed to too much air, which may occur either at home or during the bottling process, and it is more noticeable in younger wines.
  5. Unwanted carbonation might occur as a result of substandard wine being consumed.
  6. In the case of wine, if you notice any form of further fermentation occurring after you’ve already purchased a bottle, this is not a good indicator.
  7. 3.
  8. If you notice anything off-putting in a bottle of wine, it’s a good indication that it won’t be particularly pleasant to drink.
  9. We’ll go into more depth about which smells indicate certain characteristics later, but remember how essential our sense of smell is when it comes to drinking wine.
  10. If you taste something unpleasant in a bottle of wine, there’s a significant likelihood that it’s past its prime and should not be consumed.
  11. If you’re not sure about the taste of a wine, a short whiff should be enough to confirm your fears that the bottle has gone bad.

Why does wine go bad?

Several factors can contribute to a bottle of wine becoming stale, and we’ll cover the most prevalent ones below. Several of these problems are caused by exposure to air or the introduction of bacteria or yeast that you do not want in your wine bottle. Microbes and chemical imbalances, as well as defective corks and seals, can all contribute to the production of bad wine. The presence of too much Brett, also known as Brettanomyces, in your wine can produce an unpleasant scent that is akin to band-aids, barnyard, farm animals, or dung in your wine.

  1. Although the grapes that winemakers use to manufacture their wines might be the source of this problem, inadequate cleanliness in the winery is the most common cause of brett in wine.
  2. The smell of wet cardboard, or even the scent of a wet dog, may be detected in some wines that have been tainted by cork.
  3. It’s understood that flaws in the cork of your wine bottle might develop from time to time, and that they are beyond the control of the winemakers.
  4. It is possible for mold to leave behind a substance called trichloranisole in the cork (even if the mold is no longer present), and this chemical produces an extremely disagreeable odor.
  5. The presence of mold on top of the cork of an aging bottle of wine should not be a cause for concern unless the mold is particularly strong.

Please keep in mind that a corked wine refers to the presence of TCA alone; an old cork that has come apart and dropped into your bottle does not always indicate that the wine is spoiled.

Wine and oxidation

It is possible that oxidation is the most prevalent reason for wine to go sour. In the event that your wine comes into touch with an excessive amount of air (and oxygen), a chemical reaction occurs. Acrylaldehyde in the brew turns to acetic acid, converting your wine into vinegar in the process. This can result in a foul odor that smells like nail paint remover, which is referred to as volatile acidity (VA). A modest quantity of VA, like Brett, isn’t always a negative thing, since it may improve your wine by producing more nuanced flavors that are more palatable.

  1. Moreover, it is this oxidation process that contributes to the dark look of aged wine.
  2. If a wine is exposed to insufficient oxygen during the winemaking process, sulfur compounds can form in the wine.
  3. Fermentation produces a distinct odor that is really unpleasant and is generated by the bacteria.
  4. Another factor that might contribute to your wine going bad is if it undergoes further fermentation in the bottle, which is frequently caused by improper storage at an unsuitable temperature (see below).
  5. When wine is fermented, it is done so in casks and barrels; it is not intended to ferment in your bottle.
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What happens if you drink old wine?

You might be concerned about drinking old wine now that you’ve learned about all of the minor nuances that might damage a bottle. Fortunately, while all of these defects may detract from the flavor of your wine, none of them are hazardous when consumed. If you can get over the odor of damp cardboard, corked wine will not make you sick, according to the experts. The same is true for flat wine that has been fermented to produce bubbles; you may just enjoy the wine with more bubbles than you anticipated.

It is also OK to drink oxidized wine that has gone dark and tastes like vinegar since it will not make you sick.

Despite the fact that it smells bad, sulfur compounds in your wine do not actually damage the bottle.

If it doesn’t, you may even go a step further and speed up the procedure.

An old copper penny, or any copper object of similar kind, can be used to enhance the flavor of your wine. As a result, it will react with sulfur compounds, and the stench will nearly always be entirely gone. Following that, you may sit back and enjoy your wine!

Drinking old and aged wine

There is a significant distinction between old wine, which is wine that has been preserved for an excessive amount of time, and aged wine, which is wine that has been prepared specifically to be stored for an extended period of time before consuming. The attitude you take when you’re drinking a special bottle of time-aged wine will differ from that taken when you’re sipping a typical bottle. It is recommended that you leave the bottle upright for several days before ingesting it, to allow the flavors to blend.

The wine will be considerably more enjoyable if there are no floating fragments in it.

Although it is essential to keep wine from being exposed to air when keeping it, it is best to allow it to breathe before drinking it.

Don’t be disappointed if an old wine doesn’t taste amazing right away; when it’s been given some time to breathe, the flavors will become much more apparent and complex.

How to prevent wine from going bad

Old wine is quite frustrating, but there are a number of things you can do to avoid your hard-earned bottles from becoming stale. Properly storing your wine will ensure that it lasts far longer, allowing you to enjoy red or white wine, opened or unopened, for significantly longer periods of time than previously. You need to know how long red wine, as well as white and sparkling wines, will last so that you may know when to consume bottles before they become too old to drink any more of them. Continue reading to learn about the most effective methods for extending the life of your wine cellar.

Storing opened wine

However, you may take a number of precautions to keep your hard-earned bottles of wine from going bad before they become stale. Keeping your wine in the proper storage environment will allow you to enjoy it for much longer periods of time, whether it is red or white and whether it is opened or not. Know how long red wine lasts and how long white and sparkling wines last so you may know when to consume bottles before they get too old. You should also know how long white wine lasts and how long sparkling wine lasts.

The appropriate storage of wine is essential if your wine collection is expanding.

Storing unopened wine

The majority of wine fans purchase bottles on a regular basis, and not usually with the intention of drinking them immediately. What could be more frustrating than saving an unique bottle for a year or two, only to open it and discover that it has gone bad due to the passage of time? Don’t worry, there are a variety of methods for extending the shelf life of your unopened wine. Always keep your bottles at a cool temperature, just like you would with opened wine. The ideal temperature ranges between 40 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit; anything beyond 70 degrees Fahrenheit risks ruining your wine by causing it to age too quickly.

  1. It is also important not to allow your wine to become too cold, and especially not to allow it to freeze.
  2. Again, as with previously opened bottles, extreme temperature swings should be avoided at all costs.
  3. Wine may be degraded and damaged by exposure to light, particularly sunshine.
  4. Keep wine away from windows, if for no other reason than to prevent spills.
  5. It helps to keep the cork from drying out, and it is also the most space-efficient way to store wine bottles on a shelf or rack.

Vibrations are also thought to speed up the chemical changes that cause wine to age, thus it is better to reduce shaking to a bare minimum according to the ideas of wine professionals. Having learnt about the negative consequences of drinking old wine, it’s time to open a bottle of the good stuff.

Final Verdict:

In this case, what occurs is that you consume aged wine. It’s quite improbable that you’ll become sick or have any major side effects from using this product. The presence of acetic acid may induce a little stinging sensation in your mouth, but in actuality, the worst result is a foul-tasting wine. Fortunately, there are several measures you can take to keep a wine from becoming old and stale, so simply follow our simple guidance and savor every sip of your favorite beverage. Bonus tip: Watch this informative video to learn how to identify whether your wine has been corked!

What Happens To Your Body When You Drink Expired Wine

Shutterstock It is likely that if you drink wine, you have experienced this scenario: you go to pour a glass and discover, much to your dismay, that your wine is odorous and expired! The adventurous among us may decide to drink it nonetheless, but the rest of us will most likely go straight to Google to find out what it is: What happens to your body when you consume wine that has expired is a mystery. It turns out that if you have a glass or two of wine, you won’t get into too much trouble. Even if you don’t like for the aroma, you’ll be OK if you’re willing to accept the challenge of this specific journey.

“Even if the vinegar wine is no longer drinkable, it is not chemically polluted and should not be harmful to your health.” Furthermore, according to the website, poor wine can be harmful to your health, although this is a highly unlikely scenario.

This is extremely unusual, and you would have to deliberately poison your wine in order for it to occur ” (viaWine On My Time).

There’s a reason old wine won’t hurt you

Shutterstock While overindulging in wine can certainly have long-term consequences that can be fairly significant, there is a very particular reason why drinking wine that has gone sour won’t do you any harm: The presence of alcohol helps to keep everything under check. According to Wine On My Time, “The presence of alcohol in wine is the primary reason why it can’t be tainted to the extent that it becomes toxic to humans when consumed. Wine’s high alcohol level functions as a bactericide, ensuring that it is safe to consume while drinking.” In the end, though, there isn’t a really compelling reason to consume badwine in large quantities at all.

Instead, simply get a fresh bottle of wine and enjoy it “It’s improbable, though, that you’ll ever find it enjoyable.

Can Old Wine Make You Sick? Here’s The Truth

“Age appears best in four things: old wood to burn, old wine to drink, old friends to trust, and old authors to read,” according to Athenaeus of Naucratis, a Greek rhetorician, and Francis Bacon, an English philosopher, statesman, scientist, jurist, orator, and author, who were both quoted as having said, “Age appears best in four things: old wood to burn, old wine to drink, old friends to trust, and old authors to read.” Generally speaking, it is agreed upon that wine improves with age.

If that’s the case, a smart thing to ask is whether or not vintage wine may make you sick. As a matter of fact, it is a perishable item.

The Lure of Old Wine

In many ways, modern wine culture is influenced by the cultures of Ancient Greece and Rome, including what has become an irresistible attraction to vintage wine. The early Romans determined the worth of a wine based on its age and aging potential, with older wines fetching greater prices than those judged to be of inferior quality. In that regard, Falernian wine, which was used to celebrate Julius Caesar after his conquest of Spain and was matured for 15–20 years, was highly prized since it was aged for such a long period of time.

Another favorite was Caecuban, a white wine whose color darkened and evolved into a fiery crimson as it matured.

Wine that had been matured for at least a year was deemed old, while anything else was considered fresh.

The Aging of Wine

Wine changes as a result of its ageing without a doubt. Wine that is over a decade old will not make you sick since it is not intended to spoil as it matures but rather to decline. Because of the interactions between its constituents, which include water, glycosides, phenolics (tannins), alcohols, and acids (among others), changes in flavor, fragrance, and color can be observed in the finished product. When it comes to color, reds get less strong, whereas whites become deeper in hue as time goes on.

In the course of time, wines (especially red wines) develop flavors that include notes of leather, tobacco, dried leaves, coffee, and stewed or dried fruits.

These modifications, on the other hand, are not necessarily beneficial, leading to the misunderstanding that all wines improve with age.

Those remaining items, of which there is a limited selection, can be stored for display at a wine party where only genuine oenophiles will recognize their worth.

Types of Wine Which Good Aging Potential

The structure of a wine determines how long it can be kept for. This refers to the relationship that exists between the pieces that make up the structure. Wines with an excellent aging potential have low pH (very acidic) levels, as well as higher levels of polyphenols (tannin), sugars, and alcohol content than other types of wine. The aging potential of a grape is also influenced by the quality of the grape. Thicker skinned grapes with low water content and grown in lower yields have a longer aging potential than grapes with a higher water content.

Red Wine Aging Potential

  • 20 years for Aglianico, 10-20 years for Cabernet Sauvignon, 10 years for Malbec, 7 to 17 years for Merlot, 20 years for Nebbiolo, 10 years for Pinot Noir (longer for Bourgogne), 5 to 15 years for Syrah, 10 to 20 years for Tempranillo, 5 years for Zinfandel, and 10 years for Zinfandel.

White Wine Aging Potential

  • The aging period for Chardonnay is 10 years (longer for Bourgogne), Garganega is 8 years, Muscadet is three years, Pinot Gris is three years, Sauvignon Blanc is four years, Semillon is seven years (longer for Bordeaux), Trebbiano is eight years, White Rioja is ten to fifteen years, and Viognier is four years.

Sweet Wine Aging Potential

  • Chardonnay – 10 years (longer for Bourgogne)
  • Garganega – 8 years
  • Muscadet – 3 years
  • Pinot Gris – 3 years
  • Sauvignon Blanc – 4 years
  • Sémillon – 7 years (longer for Bordeaux)
  • Trebbiano – 8 years
  • White Rioja – 10 to 15 years
  • Viognier – 4 years

How To Tell If Wine Has Gone Bad

If you drink wine that has gone bad, you will almost certainly have a bad wine drinking experience, aside from overindulging in alcoholic beverages.

It makes no difference whether the wine is young or aged in this case. Wine can become bad as a consequence of being left open for an extended period of time or as a result of having a wine defect. It is possible to detect several distinct qualities in a wine that has gone bad.

1. Smell

When wine goes off, the fragrance differs depending on what caused it to go off in the first place. It is the action of bacteria on wine that causes it to be converted into acetic acid, which gives it a strong scent similar to vinegar or sauerkraut. The oxidation process causes a damaged wine to smell nutty, like burnt marshmallow or applesauce, or a combination of these. When a wine is reduced, it takes on the scent of cabbage, burnt rubber, or garlic, among other things. Two, four, six-trichloroanisole (TCA), a chemical contaminant that mainly comes from actual cork sources such as oak barrels or processing lines, generates damp basements, sweaty socks, and a nasty wet dog odor in wine exposed to it (see Figure 1).

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2. Taste

Any red wine that is neither Port or dessert wine will have an excessively sweet flavor to it. White wine will have a vinegar flavor, or it may taste astringent or paint thinner.

3. The position of the cork

The cork of a wine bottle should be flush with the top of the bottle’s neck when it is closed. A wine bottle with the cork lying higher than the neck, rather than below the neck, indicates that the bottle has been subjected to excessive heat and as a result, has gone off in the process of being exposed to it.

4. Color

As the wine ages, the intensity of the flavor diminishes and the color changes to a brownish-nutty hue. White wines, on the other hand, will begin to develop a deeper color that is either deep yellow or brownish straw-like in appearance.

5. Effervescence

Effervescence (bubbles) occurring in wine that is not sparkling wine indicates that the wine has experienced an unplanned second fermentation after bottling and has become damaged as a result of the second fermentation.

Shelf Life of Opened Wine

Once a bottle of wine has been opened, its shelf life is significantly reduced, regardless of its potential for age. The shelf life of several varieties of wines is mentioned in the table below.

  • Fortified wine (Sherry, Port, Madeira and so on) has the longest shelf life once it has been opened if the cork has been replaced and the bottle has been stored in a cold, dark area for at least 28 days. Light white and rose wines should be consumed within 3-7 days. Replace the cork and put the bottle in the refrigerator
  • Bottles of Champagne and English Sparkling Wine should be kept in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days. Replace the cork with a wine stopper or plastic wrap with a rubber band. Replace the cork and keep the wine in a cold, dark area for 3-5 days if it is red wine. 3-5 days – White and Rose Wines – Remove the cork and place the bottle in the refrigerator
  • 1 to 3 days – Champagne or sparkling wine (Prosecco, Cava, etc.) Replace the cork and put the bottle in the refrigerator

Factors That Improve the Shelf Life of Your Wine

If the cork is replaced and the wine is stored in a cold and dark environment, fortified wines (Sherry, Port, Madeira, and so on) have the longest shelf life once they have been opened. Light white and rose wines should be consumed within 3 to 7 days of purchase. Refrigerate once you’ve replaced the cork. Within 3 to 5 days – Champagne, English Sparkling Wine – Replace the cork with a wine stopper or cover the bottle tightly with a rubber band and place it in the refrigerator; Retain the cork and store the wine in a cold, dark location for 3 to 5 days.

Wine with a lifespan of one to three days (Prosecco, Cava, etc.) Refrigerate once you’ve replaced the cork.


The best temperature for storing wine is between 45° F and 65° F, with 55° F being the most favorable temperature for storage. Anything above 70° F accelerates the aging process and cooks the contents, affecting the flavor and fragrance of the contents. When the temperature drops below 45 degrees Fahrenheit, the moisture content of the surrounding air decreases, causing the cork to dry out and shrink, enabling air to enter the bottle and causing the contents to oxidize.

Once the optimal temperature has been determined, it must be maintained at that level in order to avoid ‘weeping.’ This is the process through which the bottle shrinks and expands, enabling air to enter the container.

Light Exposure

UV radiation from the sun can harm and speed up the aging process of wine, according to research. Winemakers prefer tinted glass bottles for this reason, as well as cellars with no windows or basements where they may keep their wines fresher longer.

A Note on The Correct Storing Position of Wine

To maintain the cork in contact with the liquid and prevent it from drying out and shrinking, it has traditionally been suggested that wine be kept horizontally. It has been shown that leaving corks soaked in wine for an extended period of time may actually hasten the deterioration of the cork’s cell structure. Bottles should only be stored horizontally to minimize space, according to current recommendations.


  • To maintain the cork in touch with the liquid and so prevent it from drying out and shrinking, it was traditionally suggested that wine be kept horizontally. Keep corks persistently soaked in wine, it has been shown, may actually hasten the degradation of the cell structure of the cork. Bottles should only be stored sideways now if you want to conserve space.

Conclusion Old wine will not make you sick, but make sure to store it correctly to prevent it from turning into vinegar, which, we can guarantee you, will taste nothing like wine. Cheers to the next glass of wine!

How Long Does Wine Last?

Those of you who have ever pondered if a leftover or old bottle of wine is still safe to consume are not alone in your concerns. While certain things improve with age, this is not always the case when it comes to a bottle of wine that has been opened. In the same way that food and drinks do not endure indefinitely, the same can be said about wine. Here’s everything you need to know about how long wine lasts, as well as how to determine if your wine has gone bad. Despite the fact that unopened wine has a longer shelf life than opened wine, it is nevertheless susceptible to spoilage.

Always keep in mind that the shelf life of unopened wine varies depending on the kind of wine and how properly it is kept in the refrigerator or freezer.

  • White wine should be consumed within 1–2 years of the written expiry date
  • Red wine should be consumed within 2–3 years of the printed expiration date. Cooking wine should be consumed 3–5 years after the printed expiration date. Fine wine has a shelf life of 10–20 years if it is stored correctly in a wine cellar.

In general, wine should be stored in cold, dark settings, with bottles turned on their sides to avoid the cork from drying out and becoming brittle. Unopened wine has a shelf life of 1–20 years, depending on the type of wine and how long it has been opened. The shelf life of a bottle of wine that has been opened varies depending on the kind of wine. In general, lighter wines lose their freshness much more quickly than darker kinds. Once a bottle of wine is opened, it is subjected to increased levels of air, heat, light, yeast, and bacteria, all of which can produce chemical reactions that degrade the taste and quality of the bottle of wine ( 1 , 2 ).

When it comes to common wines, the following is a list with an estimate of how long they will last after they are opened:

  • Sparkling wine should be consumed within 1–2 days
  • Light white and rosé should be consumed within 4–5 days
  • Rich white should be consumed within 3–5 days
  • Red wine should be consumed within 3–6 days
  • Dessert wine should be consumed between 3–7 days
  • Port should be consumed within 1–3 weeks.

The best way to store opened wine is in a refrigerator that has been properly sealed. Bottles of still wine, or non-sparkling wine, should always be decanted before being placed in a storage container. summary When a bottle of wine is opened, it becomes spoiled as a result of a sequence of chemical processes that alter the flavor of the wine. In general, lighter wines deteriorate more quickly than darker wines. Wine that has been opened should be properly packed and kept in the refrigerator to ensure that it lasts longer.

  • The first thing to watch for is a change in hue, which is the easiest way to tell.
  • The wine’s color changes after it has been exposed to an excessive amount of oxygen, which is common.
  • The smell of your wine may also be an excellent indicator of whether or not your wine has been spoiled.
  • Wine that has become stale will begin to smell nuttiness, applesauce, or burnt marshmallows, among other things.
  • If you are feeling daring, you may also taste your wine to determine whether or not it has gone bad.
  • If the wine has gone bad, the flavor will be harsh and acidic, similar to that of cooked applesauce.
  • Heat damage to your wine, such as a visible leak in the cork or a cork that has pushed over the rim of the bottle, might indicate that your wine has been damaged by heat, which can cause the wine to smell and taste duller.

Wine that has changed color, produces a sour, vinegar-like smell, or has a harsh, sour flavor has gone bad, as has wine that has seen color changes.

It is not simply excessive exposure to oxygen that can cause wine to get stale; it is also an increase in yeast and bacterial development.

As a result, hazardous foodborne pathogens such as E.

cereus—two kinds of bacteria that can cause food poisoning—do not pose a significant threat to public health (1, 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 ).

According to the findings of a research on the survival rates of foodborne pathogens in alcoholic drinks, they can survive for many days to several weeks ( 6 ).

Food poisoning symptoms include an upset stomach, abdominal discomfort, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and a fever ( 7 ).

summary Although the danger of contracting serious foodborne pathogens from poor wine is minimal, drinking terrible wine is not only unpleasant, but it can also put you at risk of contracting them.

Wine, like any other food or beverage, has a shelf life that must be respected.

Although unopened wine may be enjoyed for around 1–5 years beyond the expiry date, leftover wine can be enjoyed for approximately 1–5 days after it has been opened, depending on the type of wine consumed.

By storing your wine properly, you may also extend the shelf life of your wine. After finding leftover or old wine in your kitchen, check to see whether it has gone bad before throwing it away or drinking it.

Does Alcohol Expire? The Lowdown on Liquor, Beer, and Wine

Different procedures and substances are used in the production of alcoholic drinks, which include liquor, beer, and wine. Fermentation is involved in all of them. In this sense, it refers to the process through which yeast converts glucose into alcohol through fermentation (1,2). Other factors may have an impact on the shelf life of alcohol. Temperature variations, exposure to light, and oxidation are examples of such factors (1,2).


Liquor is regarded as being shelf-stable. Gin, vodka, whiskey, tequila, and rum are all included in this category. Many different grains and plants are used to make this type of food. They start with a base that is fermented with yeast before distilling the finished product. Some liquors are distilled more than once to give them a smoother flavor. The resultant liquid can then be aged in casks or barrels made of a variety of woods to give complexity to the final product. Once the booze is packaged by the producer, it no longer has the ability to age.

If you have a less refined palate, you may not notice a difference in flavor for several months or perhaps a year after starting the treatment program (3).

Keep the bottles upright to avoid the liquid coming into contact with the cap, which can cause corrosion and degrade the flavor and quality of the product.

The fact that liqueurs—sweetened, distilled spirits containing tastes such as fruit, spices, or herbs—will remain up to 6 months after opening should not be overlooked.


Beer is made by brewing a cereal grain — commonly malted barley — with water and yeast to create a carbonated beverage (1,6, 7 ). Fermenting this combination results in the production of naturally occurring carbonation, which gives beer its unique fizz (1, 7 ). The addition of hops, or the blooms of the hop plant, occurs at the conclusion of the process. These lend bitter, flowery, or citrus tones and scents to the food they are served with. Furthermore, they aid in the stabilization and preservation of beer (1).

Beer with an alcohol by volume (ABV) more than 8 percent is generally considered to be somewhat more shelf-stable than beer with a lower ABV, according to industry standards.

To increase the shelf life of a wide range of food goods, including beer, pasteurization is used to eliminate hazardous microorganisms with high temperatures ( 8 ).

In order to get the greatest taste out of unpasteurized beers, they should be served within three months of bottling.

Pasteurizedbeers can retain their freshness for up to one year after they have been bottled. Ideally, beer should be stored upright in a cold, dark location with a consistent temperature, such as your refrigerator. Drink it within a few hours after opening to get the most out of the flavor and fizz.


Craft beer is made by brewing cereal grains (typically malted barley) with water and yeast to create a carbonated beverage (1,6, 7 ). Fermenting this combination results in the production of naturally occurring carbonation, which gives beer its characteristic fizz (1, 7 ). The next step is the addition of hops, which are the blossoms of the hop plant. Aromas and flavors such as bitter, flowery, and citrus are imparted by them. As an added benefit, they aid in the stabilization and preservation of beer (1).

Beer with an alcohol by volume (ABV) more than 8 percent is generally considered to be slightly more shelf-stable than beer with a lower ABV, and vice versa.

To increase the shelf life of a wide range of food goods, including beer, pasteurization is used to destroy hazardous microorganisms using high heat ( 8 ).

In order to get the greatest taste out of unpasteurized beers, they should be served within 3 months of bottling.

Even after being bottled for up to a year, pasteurized beers retain their freshness and flavor.

For the best flavor and carbonation, drink it within a few hours after opening it.

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