You have a bottle of wine in your refrigerator, and you’re counting on it for when you have surprise company or had a hard day and feel like unwinding. But how do you know when your wine goes bad? There are signs. You just have to make sure you check them in time! And you don't want to be wineless on Valentine's Day, right?
I’m not a wine-obsessed person, but I do love to keep a nice full-bodied red or a chilled rose nearby, just in case I feel like having one or I find out that someone is coming over at the last possible moment. And I’ve had in my life pretty nasty experiences when I got sick from having only one glass of wine or I had just bought the bottle, and it got bad almost instantly. I wasn’t that upset, but when you don’t drink too much wine, and you feel like having a glass, it’s better to know what you can count on when the craving strikes. Or when you need some wine to use in your cooking. Or else, put it on the grocery list.
What are the reasons that wine goes bad?
There are plenty of possible answers to why wine goes bad. Not all types of wine last a long time. It’s possible that the wine in your bottle has been in contact with air for too long. Or a similar problem is that the cork was tainted. To prevent that from happening, I got one of those reusable corks that seal the wine in after it’s been opened, for further imbibing. But if the liquid inside has gone bad (and you really shouldn’t be drinking it anymore) there are a few ways you can find out.
'Corked wine' means that your wine has gone bad. And it’s called so because some of the time you can smell or examine the cork and know if the liquid is still fit for drinking. But even with this test, your wine could still be corked. So go exploring further. Pour yourself a glass, don’t drink it, and check out these signs.
5 signs that your wine has gone bad
1. Smell it
You can smell it right out of the bottle, or you can pour some of it into a glass and stick your nose in. How does it smell? Is it moldy, kind of like a basement? Does it smell like vinegar, cardboard, vinegar or raisins? Or do you detect any chemical flavors in it? Are there any astringent flavors? Then it’s gone bad.
2. The cork is pushed out
Before you open the wine bottle, see how the cork looks still in it. If it looks like it’s pushed slightly from the bottle, then you shouldn’t investigate further. This sign means that the wine has overheated and expanded in the bottle.
3. Taste a little
If its’s raspy or has a paint-thinner flavor, then it’s gone bad. If it tastes a little bit fizzy or effervescent, but it’s not a sparkling wine, then it has undergone a process of second fermentation after it was bottled and it definitely won’t be enjoyable.
4. Sweet red wine
If your red wine is supposed to be dry, but it tastes sweet or similar to dessert wine, then it suffered from heat exposure and died. Or to put it plainly, it has gone bad, and you really shouldn’t have any.
5. A brownish color
After you’ve poured it into the glass, lift it up into the light. What color is it? If the hue is browner than red or whatever it’s supposed to be, then it’s expired, and it’s a no-no. White wines that have developed a deep yellow or straw color are oxidized and should also not be drunk by you.
The next time you're buying wine, choose wisely. It's important that it fit your tastes, but also your dinner. Here are 9 Common Types Of Red Wine You Need In Your Wine Rack.