Should You Refrigerate Red Wine?

There is a lot of confusion around how to serve and store red wine when it comes to refrigeration. Many people think that refrigerating red wine will ruin the flavor, but this is not the case.

Should You Refrigerate Red Wine?

It is recommended to refrigerate red wine after opening if you don’t drink it all in one sitting. Keep reading to find out more.

Should Red Wine Be Served Chilled?

A lot of people will serve red wine at room temperature but this is not when it tastes best. Red wine should be served slightly below room temperature to make the most of the flavor.

Depending on the variety of wine, you should leave it in the fridge for 45 to 90 minutes before serving. The ideal serving temperature for most red wines is between 60 and 60 degrees fahrenheit, and the ideal storing temperature is 55 degrees fahrenheit.

The wine should be chilled before opening. When you take the wine out of the refrigerator you should open it and let it breathe for about 20 minutes. You can do this after pouring it into the glass if you prefer.

Should You Keep Red Wine On Ice? 

Once the red wine is open, you can keep it on ice during the evening to maintain the perfect drinking temperature if you want to. If you don’t have any ice then it will still taste great, but it will come up to room temperature gradually.

Keeping it in the refrigerator in between glasses will make the wine too chilled as the temperature will continue to drop.

Should You Refrigerate Red Wine After Opening?

What if you don’t drink all of the wine in one sitting? How do you store the leftover wine? When the red wine has been opened it will come into contact with the air. This means that the process of oxidation will begin.

Initially, this makes the wine smoother and easier to drink. This is why you should let red wine breathe after opening instead of serving it immediately. After a while, the oxidation process will make the wine taste sour or stale.

It will often take on a vinegary taste which makes the wine unpleasant to drink. It won’t harm you as there is no bacteria present, but you probably won’t enjoy drinking it. To slow down this process, you should keep open wine sealed and in the refrigerator.

What If You Have Lost The Cork?

If you know longer have the cork or you can’t seal the wine bottle, you can transfer the wine into a different container. A mason jar with an airtight seal would work well.

Once the wine is in a sealed container in the refrigerator it will last for several days or even up to a week. You will gradually start to notice the flavor change, but it should still be enjoyable.

Even after the flavor has changed slightly, you could still use the red wine for cooking. You can buy reusable wine bottle tops with a rubber seal that fit most bottles of wine.

These come in very useful if you like to open a bottle and have a glass or two then save the rest for the next day. They will prevent too much air from getting into contact with the wine and will keep the flavor intact.

Will Refrigerating Red Wine Ruin The Flavor?

Keeping red wine in the refrigerator after it has been opened will actually preserve the flavor, not ruin. If you don’t like your red wine too chilled, take it out of the refrigerator about 15 or 20 minutes before serving.

This will take the edge off and make it slightly warmer. If you place an open bottle of red wine in your refrigerator without sealing it, then you will notice a change in flavor.

This is not just because of the oxidation process, but also because the wine will absorb the flavor of other items in the refrigerator. If you have foods with strong smells or tastes, the wine will start to absorb them and the flavor of the wine will be compromised.

Tips For Serving Red Wine

Here are some top tips to keep in mind when serving red wine.

  • Choose The Right Glass – Red wine should be served in a larger, bowl shaped glass which gives plenty of room for the wine to breathe. There are different shapes for different types of wine, but as long as the glass is big enough and doesn’t have a narrow top then it will be fine.
  • Chill The Wine – Red wine is best served slightly below room temperature.
  • Let it Breathe – Giving the wine about 20 minutes to breathe before you drink it will create a smoother flavor and drinking experience.


Red wine should be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator to help it last longer and to preserve the flavor.

Sarah Perez
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