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pompetta per estrarre l'aria e far durare il vino più a lungo con Brunello Orcia Doc e Supertuscan Donatella Cinelli Colombini


It depends on the wine and on the way in which the bottle is treated, sucking out the air or by introducing an inert gas. The great red wines better than the whites


quanto dura una bottiglia aperta? Fattoria del Colle Doc Orcia Cenerentola

quanto dura una bottiglia aperta? Fattoria del Colle Doc Orcia Cenerentola

By Donatella Cinelli Colombini

Nowadays no one consumes a bottle in a single meal. In compliance with health standards (half a bottle a day in two meals for men and even less for women) it is difficult for even two to finish the bottle before getting up from the table. For this it is necessary to keep the wine in an optimal way until the next time of consumption. But how long can it be kept?



To answer this question, I follow the trail of wein.plus inviting the most passionate wine lovers  to read the entire article that I summarize here. There are components in wine that make it durable: extracts, alcohol and acids. The extracts are the noble parts of the wine skin which dissolve during fermentation and pass into the wine. Obviously their presence in the wine varies according to the grape variety and the terroir, but there is a direct correlation between ripening, the calibre of the grapes and the climate. If the grapes are perfectly ripe, the rains have not increased the size of the grape berries and there have not been strong perturbations which, causing temperatures to drop, have stiffened the skins … then we will have musts and wines rich in colour and extracts. Once upon a time this rarely happened today it is almost normal, at least here in Montalcino and in the Doc Orcia areas.Together with a good content of extracts these wines will also have a good alcohol content. This also helps the bottled wine to keep longer. Other favourable elements are the maturation of the wine in wooden barrels which increases the tannin content and therefore the shelf life. Something that perhaps makes the lovers of “wine without additions” turn up their noses are the sulphites. The addition of CO2 undoubtedly facilitates the conservation of wine even when the bottle is open.


In summary, here is the list of features that extend the life of the opened bottle:

  • Red wines last longer than white ones
  • Wines rich in extracts, acids and alcohol (well-structured ones)
  • Wines aged in wood
  • Sweet wines last longer than dry ones
  • If the bottle is almost full it is easier to preserve the wine it contains



In general, opening a bottle in advance  improves the wine. The aroma becomes more expressive, complex and refined. The deterioration occurs when the contact with the air is prolonged and oxidizes the wine giving it a stale and old character.

Here are two tips for storing bottles:

  • keep the wine cold especially if the open bottle is white or rosé
  • keep bottles upright to reduce contact between wine and oxygen
  • suck out the air with a vacuum stopper

Technicians are divided upon the use of the pump that extracts the air. Some say it also takes away the scents of the wine. Obviously the best system consists in hermetically closing the bottle and replacing the air with an inert gas such as argon. It is the system found in Coravin and in wine dispensers, i.e. in systems where wine is served by the glass. A more homemade system is to transfer the leftover wine into a small bottle to be filled up to the neck in order to minimize the surface in contact with the air. Also in this case it is essential to hermetically close the bottle.



Regarding duration of wine in open bottles, my opinion differs from that of Wein. Plus and the majority of articles on the subject. Experience has taught me that the true expert recognizes oxidation almost immediately. Serving a day-old wine to a Master of Wine, with the sole exception of antiquarian bottles, has the effect of receiving a negative judgment. Better to avoid and, even during fairs, I recommend opening the bottles every morning. Those who have to serve a young red aged in new barriques can instead find benefit from an accelerated and abundant supply of oxygen such as that obtainable with violent decantation or early opening, which brings the wine into a condition more similar to the one it will assume with the passing of the years. This is the case of the great Bordeaux wines at the beginning of their marketing.


The following indications therefore come from Wein. Plus and are very “generous”.

  • Simple white and rosé wines can be kept for one or two days, higher quality white wines for one or two weeks.
  • Young red wines with lots of acidity and tannin remain drinkable for up to one or two weeks – the higher the quality the longer they last.
  • Ripe red and white wines are more sensitive and usually do not last more than a day.
  • Sweet wines can be kept for several weeks.