How Long Can You Store Wine At Room Temperature?

How long can you store wine at room temperature? Wine can be kept at room temperature for up to 2 – 3 years without causing damage to the wine, but it depends on where the wine is stored. The temperature needs to be between 45° F – 65° F. The wine must have only a small amount of light exposure, and there should be a certain amount of an absence of humidity and no noise.

The most frequently asked questions wine drinkers are asked regarding wine storage is whether they can keep the wine at room temperature. Simply placing wine on a rack and keeping it in a room at room temp is an easy way of storage. But this is a subject that we should explore more deeply. In the end, if wine is something you like, you should also learn to store it properly to allow it to age at its best.

White wines, such as sparkling or rose, should be chilled before serving. Port and port-fortified wines can be stored similarly and stand up to these conditions for longer since they are more robust. Be careful as warmer temperatures can make wines age faster, while cooler temperatures (around 55 degrees F) are the ideal conditions for any expensive fine wines you may have purchased.

When storing your wine fridge or cellar could be the ideal scenario, but you don’t need to have these luxuries to enjoy your bottle of wine.

Read on to explore each individual bottle of wine, whether it is unopened or you have already opened the bottle, and many more details you may find helpful.

In this guide:

How Long Can You Store Opened Wine At Room Temperature?

Display of wines being stored.
Bottles of wine on a shelf.

If properly sealed when opened, a bottle of wine is likely to last for a few days. Wines of higher quality tend to last longer once they are opened because they are more concentrated and have a better structure.

Instead of reusing the cork and stopper, a silicone one that blocks oxygen from getting into the open bottle is the best protection for the wine. Oxygen is the enemy of wine once an open bottle is sitting at room temperature, and a cork with a porous surface lets oxygen flow into the bottle. A correctly airtight and sealed bottle will let you enjoy your bottle of wine for longer after it has been opened.

Avoid vacuum seal systems, as they will drain the authentic aromas of the bottle.

Red wines will last longer once they are open. White wine is always best served chilled but can still be enjoyed slightly warm. It really is down to your personal preference and if the wine still tastes good, then get pouring!

After you have popped the cork, most wines will go bad in about a day. There are many cork preservation devices that will help prolong the shelf-life of your opened wine for weeks or months.

Here is a table that will quickly summarise the ideal storage temperatures of each wine, where to ideally store it, and the way to store your bottle of wine.

Red WineWhite WineChampagne
Ideal Storage Temperature55 deg F55 deg F60 deg F
Best Way To StoreRoom temperatureCool – mildRefrigerator
Best Place To StoreDark placeRefrigeratorRefrigerator

Red Wine

Bottle of red wine.
Bottle of red wine.

Red wine can be kept at room temperature if the room does not get too hot in the daytime, especially in summer. Also, you should ensure that the bottles are kept out of direct sunlight.

For the best outcomes, red wine is ideal to be stored at 55 degrees F in darkness and with low humidity by placing the bottles on their sides, allowing the cork to stay wet.

If you store the wine at room temperature and not in a dark area with the control of humidity settings. Your wine will not be as strong and as rich, even though. Numerous people simply store wine racks that are at room temperature and enjoy the wine.

Most people don’t have expensive wine cellars or wine coolers to store wine. While these things can help the longevity of wine, they’re not essential to be used.

White Wine

Bottle of white wine.
Bottle of white wine.

White wine is generally stored at temperatures slightly lower than red wine. However, you can keep white wine effortlessly at temperatures of room temperature. The ideal temp range to store white and red wine is around 55deg F, meaning you don’t need to separate white and red wines in separate containers.

Similar to red wine, white wine should be kept in a wine cellar that is climate-controlled or a wine fridge to ensure that the wine is aged correctly. There are too many variables beyond your control when the wine is stored at room temperature that you do not have to be concerned about when you have cellars or wine refrigerators.

However, I have heard of people who can store white wine for years and months at room temperature and then put the bottles in the refrigerator in the kitchen for 40 minutes for chilling before serving.

Champagne

Storage of champagne bottles.
Bottles of Champagne on ice.

Champagne is well-known for being served chilled, following being placed in an Ice bath. Although Champagne should indeed be chilled prior to serving, it can also be stored at the same temperatures as other wines.

Be sure to keep the bottles away from direct sunlight, with ideally around 70% humidity. Also, keep your bottle of Champagne at least 60-65 degrees F.

Room temperature is generally thought to be about 70 degrees F which is too warm for ideal storage of Champagne long term, but it’s not bad either. If you chill your champagne before serving it for a bit longer as you will enjoy it far more than drinking it at room temperature.

Rule of thumb, always chill your Champagne for 1-2 hours before opening and don’t even think about putting it in the freezer to chill it quickly.

Before You Open Your Wine

When the wine bottle is opened, the wine can be kept at ambient temperatures (either with a screw cap or under cork) for some time. Remember, this is not the ideal method for long-term storage and can accelerate the aging process in the bottle. But, it won’t cause damage to the wine. It is best to store the bottle on its side in an open area is the best option.

It is recommended to store wine in ideal conditions in the wine refrigerator or cellar to ensure optimal aging of the wine.

Wine can still be aged under circumstances that are not ideal, but it is unable to reach its maximum potential and quality when kept in the open air in the kitchen or living room.

If you don’t have the money or aren’t able to afford an actual wine cellar. A wine cooler refrigerator is an excellent option that will cost just a tiny fraction of the cost you’d pay for a wine cellar and will give you greater control over the temperature settings for your wines.

After You Open Your Wine

Drinking wine with a wine bottle.

When you open a bottle making sure that the bottle is sealed properly to prevent oxygen from entering is more crucial than storage temperature. While keeping the bottle open in the refrigerator can help prolong its lifespan by a few days, however, they’ll be fine stored at room temperature, particularly for red wines.

A lot of people choose to store these bottles of wine in the fridge to keep them cool. However, I find this unnecessary. If you place an excellent wine stopper in the bottle, you’ll be fine with drinking the wine in a couple of days.

However, what refrigerators can offer wine that has been opened is a slower oxidation process when you open the cork. Once oxygen from outside is introduced to your wine, it begins to oxidize, which could quickly ruin the quality of your wine.

If you place your bottles that have been opened in a cool, cold refrigerator, the process of oxidation will slow down and may even give you an additional few days to take advantage of the wine. The refrigerator won’t do anything miraculous, but it can be helpful in some instances.

Aging Wine at Room Temperature

Wine can be matured at room temperature. However, it is not advised for expensive wine collections because it may delay the aging process of wine. It is less likely to happen if other conditions are favorable: steady temperature, approximately 70 percent humidity, no direct sunlight, and also no vibrations.

How Long Can Wine That Has Not Been Opened Be Stored At Ambient Temperature?

Like everything else in wine, there are no strict and unchanging guidelines. Wine storage temperature correlates directly with the speed at which the wine’s maturation processes. The ideal temperature helps top-quality wines develop steadily and become more complex until they are at their peak of drinkability (this is different between wines).

The average room temperature is typically around 70deg F. Storage of wine at this temperature won’t harm the wine, as long as there aren’t any temperature fluctuations and the other conditions for storage are good (not too much direct sunlight, a little humidity).

In the end, this can accelerate the process of aging. Instead of aging wine slowly for 20 years, the wine might be able to age for 5-10 years. It may not be a significant factor if it’s only intended for personal consumption.

If the wine is collectible or is an investment, early maturation can rapidly reduce the value of the item aftermarket.

Storage of Wines When Temperatures Are Warmer

The scientific studies conducted by Perez Coello and coworkers (2003) and Scrimgeour (2015) show that keeping wine at warmer temperatures can negatively affect the wine.

The most important thing, I believe, than temperature considerations is making sure your wine is kept at appropriate humidity levels and that it is kept in the darkest conditions as you can.

If you are storing your wine in the kitchen area, keeping it dark isn’t feasible. Certain light exposures are fine and won’t harm the wine. You should be wary of making sure that the direct sunlight doesn’t damage the wine.

Artificial soft light is fine in moderation, but exposure to direct sunlight can alter the wine and cause it to age in a different way and could also bleach the label, making it appear less appealing.

Wine can age well at room temperature (around 70 degrees F); however, it will not get to the point of quality and sophistication like it would if stored in the right storage conditions.

If you’d like to keep the wine in a way that matures well and continues to get more and better, it is recommended to consider investing in a high-end wine refrigerator, even if you do not have the space or money to build an actual wine cellar.

After Being Chilled

Wine appreciates consistency. If it’s been chilled, it’s recommended to store it in a cool place until serving time. Afterward, you can store it in a chilled state following opening. This is particularly true for sparkling wines (it will aid in maintaining the bubbles), whites, champagne, and rose. A sealed, airtight bottle can also keep the wine from being damaged.

When you cool wine for some time and then conserve it for a long time at different temperatures, it can negatively impact the wine’s quality and the way it alters. It is recommended to properly store wine at a steady, constant temperature throughout its storage to age.

Even if it is too cold or warm, as I’ve seen, it’s best to store wines at these lower temperatures rather than look to fix the problem later.

In addition, room temperatures are just a bit too hot so that wine can be properly stored. If you take wine that was stored at low temperatures and then keep it at slightly warmer temperatures, it’s not beneficial to the wine.

If the wine’s chilled, unless you have a choice but are at the point of exhausting your refrigerator space, I suggest leaving it in the fridge until you’re ready to open the cork.

Other Questions Asked

Can you store wine at room temperature after it has been chilled?

Of course, you can, as long as you are going to drink the wine within a few days. Simply put the wine back into the fridge for 2-3 hours to rechill before you serve it.

How long can you keep wine unopened?

White wines can often outlast their recommended drinking date of one to two years unopened, red wines by two to three years, and cooking wines by three to five years. Fine wine can last for decades.

A Roundup of Storing Wine

Wine should indeed be stored at a temperature of 55 degrees F at a temperature of less than 70% humidity at night and far from any dangerous chemical fumes or vibrating.

To attain these controlled settings to achieve these settings, a wine cellar or wine fridge is needed. A wine fridge is a more affordable and efficient option. The average budget wine fridge is around $400-$500, whereas building a wine cellar can set you back the same amount as extending your house!

However, there is no doubt about it. The fact is that people have stored the wine in a room at temperature for years and will continue to do so. Wine can be stored for a long time at room temperature, including Champagne.

If you do not have enough money to buy a wine cellar or fridge, you can just buy a rack for your wine at a reasonable price and try to keep it in darkness with no natural light.

A wine that is stored in a refrigerator doesn’t get as old and robust as wine stored in ideal conditions.

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