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Oct 23, 2006 06:18 AM

Keeping oxygen from the wine....

OK, I'm not a wine expert by any stretch of the imagination, so forgive me if my question is too easy:

I attended a (fascinating!) lecture about nutrition, aging and disease prevention today (It was a continuing education lecture). Anyway, I won't overly bore you with the details (speaker recommends eating a serving of each of the following foods once per day: spinach, sardines, and blueberries...)..but he also recommends one glass a day of red wine for women (two is ok for men....)....and NO MORE. Oh, and did you know that Pinot Noir has the highest concentration of the good antioxidants you're looking for??

But, the kicker is this: If you open the bottle, drink your glass or two, then there will undoubtably be wine left. HOWEVER, if you just stick the cork on top oxygen will enter, and that will break down the anti-oxidants. Now, the speaker mentioned a device with some sort of vacumn seal...anyone know where you can get one? And this may be a really stupid question, but would a screw-top bottle help? (and if so, can anyone recommend good Pinot Noirs with good screw tops??) Or at least anyone know of any good Pinots that come in "half-bottles"? I hate to see good wine go to waste....

DH and I are serious about trying the glass of red wine a day thing, and appreciate your advice. I mean, its not like we're being forced to drink something we hate :-) This guy had some very convincing statistics. And since I like spinach, blueberries, AND sardines, we will probably attempt to incorporate those as well.

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  1. This has been discussed recently in several threads. For example, see

    In a sentence, many people who have experimented with home wine preservation systems prefer inert gas and freezing over vacuum seals.

    1. Janet,

      Unless you're going to keep that open bottle of red for more than 2-3 days without finiishing it off, there is really insufficient opportunity for oxidative reactions to take place which would/could significantly effect the levels of the many phytochemical compounds in wine that contribute to its healthful benefits.

      1. The key to storing leftover is, upon un-corking the bottle, keep a clean 375cl half-bottle with screw-cap (these are usually low-end wines and available in your local supermarket or wine stores) handy and fill-it and store it in your refrigerator.

        This does not fully prevent oxygenation, but I found it to keep the wine much fresher-tasting than a half-full regular bottle that I simple re-corked.

        1. I've used the vacuum seals with decent success, at least to store bottles overnight. I've noticed that most wines, especially light- and medium-bodied reds, retain their fresh fruit notes somewhat better with the seals. With bigger reds, the differences aren't as noticeable.

          The seals are available at wine stores all over the place.

          1. If you want to drink a glass of unoxidized wine a day, get wine in a box:


            However, the apparent health benefits of wine seem from the latest research to be the same as for any alcohol.

            Moreover, the theory that antioxidants are behind the health benefits of eating lots of fruits and vegetables has been pretty well discredited. It does not seem that drinking fruit juice or wine, or taking supplements, has the same benefits.