They say that you should start each day with a smile and end it with champagne. If you plan to finally open an old bottle of champagne you have been keeping for a special occasion that never came to be and start this tradition, you are probably asking yourself: Does champagne go bad?
What’s more, if you plan to drink solo, it is highly unlikely you will finish a whole bottle at once. Therefore, you will need to find an answer to another question: How to make champagne last and stay bubbly? After all, bubbles are what makes this drink so special in the first place.
Do not fret! We will help you find the answers you are searching for. We have prepared some great tips and tricks on how to store opened champagne too.
How Long Does An Open Bottle Of Champagne Stay Good To Drink And Bubbly?
The answer to this question is relatively straightforward. If you seal the bottle with a stopper as soon as you open it and refrigerate the remaining champagne as soon as possible, it will keep for at least 24 hours.
We have not really noticed any difference between using the expensive and cheap stoppers, so you can go with whichever you choose – the results will be more-less the same. Try not to shake the bottle too much since the pressure from the bubbles can dislodge the stopper, and your champagne will then go flat.
The stopper is not a miracle-maker. The sparkling wine will inevitably lose some of its bubbles and freshness over time (rather quickly, to be fair). The good news is that even when not at its best bubbles-wise, champagne will still be good enough to make mimosas or some other mixed drink for at least a couple of days!
If you are not the biggest fan of aggressive bubbles, you might even like your champagne or sparkling wine better after a day or two. In most cases, three days is the maximum time for almost any sparkling wine to have at least some bubbles – after that, it will become flat (not sparkling). Sorry, but nothing lasts forever!
If you want to keep an open bottle of champagne fresh for the maximum possible time, you need to hinder the natural oxidation of the wine. Namely, as soon as any wine is exposed to air, it will come in contact with oxygen and start to oxidize. This is precisely why you need to use stoppers – to prevent the oxygen from coming into the bottle and having any contact with the leftover champagne.
Stoppers are not your only option, but they are definitely the most simple solution. There are “specialized” champagne stoppers you can buy too. Some even remove harmful oxygen from your sparkling wine.
What Else Can You Do To Keep An Open Bottle Of Champagne Bubbly?
As we have already mentioned, besides closing it well as soon as possible, you should also keep the bottle in the refrigerator. Why is that important? Well, keeping champagne or sparkling wine refrigerated slows down the loss of carbon dioxide. The lower the temperature, the less soluble carbon dioxide in your champagne, wine, or soda will be, and thus it will longer keep your drink of choice bubbly.
How Long Can You Store An Open Bottle Of Champagne In Your Fridge?
We recommend that you drink a whole bottle within 24 hours from the time you put it in the refrigerator. Depending on how well you seal it, and the wine itself, the maximum time bubbles will last is three days.
Can You Freeze Champagne Or Any Other Sparkling Wine?
The answer is yes, champagne and any other sparkling wine can be frozen. However, we do not recommend it. Why?
If you forget sparkling wine or champagne in your freezer, you will end up with a wine popsicle. The good news is that you can thaw the frozen champagne and still use it. The bad news is that the thawing process will cause your sparkling drink to lose some of its bubbles. The main reason behind this is the fact that the cork is usually compromised or pushed out of the bottle.
As long as you use the freezer only to quickly cool the champagne and do not forget it there till the next day, everything will be sparkling-fine!
How Long Can You Keep An Unopened Bottle Of Champagne? Does Champagne Ever Expire?
We are all trained to look for expiration dates on any goods we buy. Unfortunately, when it comes to wines and champagne, the expiration dates are not a common occurrence. So, how can you tell if a bottle you are looking at will be fresh and bubbly when you bring it home and open it?
There is a good rule of the thumb you can apply when shopping for sparkling wine: find a year of bottling. If you know the exact year the champagne was bottled, you can predict whether it is still fresh and effervescent or not. Typically, a bottle of sparkling wine or champagne stays fresh for a few years after bottling.
What if there is no year when the wine was bottled on the label? Unfortunately, sometimes you cannot find the year on the label, but you can always ask the shop owner or a staff member – they ought to have an answer for you.
Premium sparkling wines and some luxury non-vintage champagnes can be stored for quite a long time. Vintage champagnes are absolute champions in this category. They can age for more than fifteen years.
How can you tell if your wine is vintage? Vintage wine or champagne will have a vintage or year on the front of the bottle.
How To Store An Unopened Bottle Of Sparkling Wine Or Champagne At Your Home?
If you plan to drink the champagne or sparkling wine you have bought right away, or in only a few weeks, it is perfectly acceptable to keep it at room temperature. It should still be held in the dark, cool place, away from direct sunlight and heat.
If you store an unopened bottle of champagne in the fridge, its cork might dry out. As a result, the wine or champagne will lose the carbon dioxide and thus its bubbles too, or oxidize and change its original zest.
When you know that you have a special bottle you plan to keep for months or even years; it would be best to invest in a small wine refrigerator. We know that it is an expensive item you can live without, but it is definitely the best way to store any wine, champagne included. If you are going to pay a small fortune for a bottle of aged vintage champagne, you should at least store it properly and make sure you will be able to enjoy it in the future.
We have excellent advice on how to tell whether or not you are going to like aged sparkling wine or champagne before you even buy it. Since preferences vary significantly, it would be best to go to a restaurant or wine bar and order a glass. If you do not like it, you won’t spend your hard-earned money on a whole bottle.
If you choose your champagne or sparkling wine based on its sweetness, here is a chart that can help you:
Can Old Champagne Make You Sick?
Old champagne will not make you seek if you do not go overboard. If you overindulge, any wine, be it sparkling or not, will make you sick.
If you are unsure whether or not you should drink older champagne you have stored for long, you can assess it on your own just like you would any other drink. Use your senses! Common sense included!
Pour some champagne into a glass and look at it. Does it look altered? Is it cloudy?
Smell it, too. If it smells unpleasant, it is probably gone bad.
Still, you can do a final taste test to make sure. Pour a couple of small drops on your tongue. If the champagne tastes unpleasant too, then you can be 100% sure it has gone bad and discard it.
On the bright side, even in this state, champagne will not make you sick if you drink a little bit of it.
The Bottom Line: Does Champagne Go Bad?
The bottom line is that when stored properly, an unopened bottle of champagne can last quite long – at least a few years. Feel free to pop it open even if you want to enjoy it on your own since an appropriate stopper will enable you to sip it for up to three consecutive days.
Just remember to seal the champagne well and keep it refrigerated, and you will slow down the oxidation and loss of carbon dioxide and buy you some time to enjoy the golden bubbles of your sparkling drink. No matter how old, champagne, or sparkling wine are highly unlikely to make you sick.
So, go on, chill your sparkler, and pop it open whenever you feel like it! Cheers!