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What to Do With Bad Wine?

wanderluster Jun 27, 2007 06:19 AM

I bought a bottle of riesling the other day, and it is way way too sweet. Almost undrinkable. What should I do with the rest of the bottle? I was thinking maybe a sangria, or some sort of fish dish, but am feeling a bit uninspired. Help!

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  1. BobB RE: wanderluster Jun 27, 2007 07:26 AM

    If you don't like the taste, toss it, why torture yourself?

    On the other hand, if it has good flavor but is just too sweet for drinking with a meal, then yes, sangria is a possibility, or use it for marinating a fruit salad. I wouldn't want to cook fish in anything too sweet.

    6 Replies
    1. re: BobB
      JaneRI RE: BobB Jun 27, 2007 07:29 AM

      I agree w/Bob 100%.

      1. re: JaneRI
        wanderluster RE: JaneRI Jun 27, 2007 07:41 AM

        The yankee in me can't throw away wine!

        1. re: wanderluster
          TonyO RE: wanderluster Jun 27, 2007 07:43 AM

          Make ice cubes and use them to flavor lemonade or order some spicy Thai food and you may find the wine is just fine

          1. re: TonyO
            JaneRI RE: TonyO Jun 27, 2007 08:26 AM

            Wow, I love the ice cube idea!

          2. re: wanderluster
            rworange RE: wanderluster Jun 30, 2007 05:25 PM

            I was wondering what was wrong with me that I have problems throwing unused food / drinks away ... you answered my question ... I grew up in New England ... it's just the Yankee in my soul.

            I assume you've frozen it ... great idea. What kind of wine was it? I might have a few ideas depending on type of wine.

            1. re: wanderluster
              Kelli2006 RE: wanderluster Oct 8, 2007 10:34 AM

              If it is too sweet to drink, then I would use it as a simple syrup for baking. I like the idea of using it to macerate fruits, or soaking a holiday fruitcake.

              If you are willing to experiment, you could use it for making wine vinegar.

        2. l
          Louise RE: wanderluster Jun 27, 2007 12:34 PM

          It may be that that was the style. If it was late harvest or 'eiswein' or 'trockenbeerenausleese' it is supposed to be sweet, to be drunk with or in place of dessert, not with dinner. Residual sugar percentage should be on the label.

          Try pouring it over some sliced strawberries and letting it sit an hour, or sipping it alongside a dessert with sweet but simple flavors, such as custard or angel cake.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Louise
            BobB RE: Louise Jun 27, 2007 02:44 PM

            If it's either of those two categories it will have been a rather expensive (certainly over $25, and in the case of eiswein possibly over $100!) bottle, and if you don't like it, send it to me, I promise it won't go to waste! ;-)

            If, on the other hand, it's just a cheap oversweetened riesling, I stand by my suggestion above.

          2. m
            missfunkysoul RE: wanderluster Jun 27, 2007 12:41 PM

            and if all else fails... vinegar ;)

            1. c
              Christnp RE: wanderluster Jun 27, 2007 01:26 PM

              Sometimes when I really don't like the flavor of a wine, but don't want to toss it, I'll just drink it as a spritzer. Since this one is so sweet, you could just mix it with some unflavored fizzy water, ice and a wedge or two of citrus

              1. l
                laurendlewis RE: wanderluster Jun 27, 2007 01:30 PM

                Poached pears?

                I like the sangria idea.

                1. Chinon00 RE: wanderluster Jun 27, 2007 03:56 PM

                  Two points:
                  1) I have no trouble pouring right down the drain wine that I do not like.
                  2) Wine that I do not like is not necessarily "bad" wine.

                  1. pikawicca RE: wanderluster Jun 30, 2007 06:23 PM


                    1. chef chicklet RE: wanderluster Jun 30, 2007 06:25 PM

                      What do I do?
                      Well when it is corked wine, forget it.I dump it, there is no getting past that taint.
                      If it is a wine that is too sweet, I'll save it with all the good intentions of making a dessert and using it there. On the other hand, if it is just so sadly off to my tastes, then I save it for my husband. God Bless him, I have rarely ever seen him thow a single thing away.
                      Me, I'll just go with out.

                      1. w
                        weezycom RE: wanderluster Jun 30, 2007 08:23 PM

                        Make a dessert risotto

                        1. Full tummy RE: wanderluster Jun 30, 2007 09:43 PM

                          I, like you, cannot discard wine I don't like, unless it's someone's "homemade" brew. I often use what's left in salad dressing. Mix with a complementary vinegar of your choosing half and half, then add the same volume (of the combined wine and vinegar) in olive oil. Add shallots, mustard, salt, pepper, etc. to taste.

                          Other ideas: pasta sauce, wine spritzer (with ginger ale, mango nectar, etc.), a light chicken stew.

                          Let us know what you do/did with it!

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: Full tummy
                            xena1441 RE: Full tummy Oct 3, 2009 08:03 PM

                            Great suggestions!

                          2. ipsedixit RE: wanderluster Jun 30, 2007 10:11 PM

                            Weed killer.

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: ipsedixit
                              rabidog RE: ipsedixit Jun 30, 2007 10:15 PM

                              rieslings are generally too sweet to make sangria with after fruit and all is added in, isn't it? i always use a really dry white wine for white sangria.

                              i LOVE the spritzer idea ... that's an awesome idea for something too sugary/heavy. i occasionally open the too-sweet bottle of riesling and usually my method for wines i don't like is to drink them last in a multi-glass evening.

                              1. re: rabidog
                                rcallner RE: rabidog Jun 30, 2007 11:09 PM

                                Sangria? It's a shame to subject good wine to the treatment....

                                If you just don't like it, figure out how to cook with it.

                                If it's really "bad," as in off, pour it as a libation to the gods of Yuck. We're all better off without it.

                                But, to answer a slightly different question, though I like red wines, I can't drink much 'cause they can trigger migraines, so if a bottle opened with company isn't finished, I wrap it up and tape it well (open container laws in my state) and send it home with a guest, or bring it to a work buddy who enjoys a nice red. So sad to let a good thing waste....

                              2. re: ipsedixit
                                patticake66 RE: ipsedixit Oct 7, 2007 12:42 PM

                                i think this is actually a good idea, USING AS WEEDKILLER! I have opened up two different bottles of wine from the same winery - I tasted them at the winery and they tasted alright- with the amount you get at the time. From what I understand maybe they are corked? mine remind me of a smell of bandaids or something..

                              3. f
                                foiegras RE: wanderluster Oct 8, 2007 07:59 AM

                                I use bad wine as fertilizer ... I knew a guy who got fantastic results with his lawn using beer ;) By applying directly to the lawn, I guess I should add ...

                                4 Replies
                                1. re: foiegras
                                  TBird RE: foiegras Oct 8, 2007 08:07 AM

                                  sweet riesling would be perfect to steam some clams in.

                                  1. re: TBird
                                    pamplemouse RE: TBird Oct 8, 2007 08:09 AM


                                    1. re: pamplemouse
                                      pamplemouse RE: pamplemouse Oct 8, 2007 08:12 AM


                                    2. re: TBird
                                      Megiac RE: TBird Oct 8, 2007 09:43 AM

                                      You can also poach salmon in it. Throw some spices and/or herbs in with the wine to infuse it with flavor (I've done it with pieces of star anise and lemon grass).

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