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What to do with a few open (full) bottles of wine?

I had a holiday open house over the weekend and I have 4 open bottles of wine, 2 red, 2 whites, inexpensive Bogle Vineyard wines.

Can these be saved for Christmas? I pushed the corks back in as far as I could get them so they seem to be airtight and in the refridgerator since they were opened.

If they can't be saved, what is best to do with them? I have light allergy/sensitivity to alcohol so I can't really drink it. :)

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  1. Tasteless lout that I am, I'd save and serve them, although the reds should be served cool, not cold. I would probably also cop to the fact that they'd been open a while … open whites live in my fridge for fairly long spells without apparent injury, while open reds seldom see more than an extra day. Those I never refrigerate, by the way, just stopper them.

    1. Can you tolerate alcohol after cooking? If so, I'd cook with it (or pour it into an ice-cube tray and freeze it, giving you cubes of wine to toss into dishes).

      If you're not going to drink it, no reason to hog space in your refrigerator with it...down the drain.

      2 Replies
      1. re: sunshine842

        I guess it depends on how long it's cooked or the amount. I've had occasional issues with alcohol in food and other times no issues what so ever.

        I tend to have issues with dishes that are deglazed with wine or wine sauces or vodka is present but don't have problems with dishes with lots of alcohol that require long simmer times like stews. Go figure.

        I can't do red wine vinegars though. :/

        1. Rename them vinegar and use as such.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Poindexter

            Can't do wine vinegars. lol

            I'm kind of a lie detector when it comes to balsamic vinegar. I'll know within a couple of hour or so if it's real aged balsamic vinegar or "balsamic" vinegar made with cheap red wine.

          2. Coq au vin and boeuf bourguignon come to mind. Personally I would only use these wines for cooking, but you could always try serving them. If someone doesn't drink them for Christmas, then use them for cooking.

            4 Replies
            1. re: JKDLady

              I guess I'll have to do the bourguignon-style dish then. Does wine really deteriorate that quickly?

              I thought if they went unused and were recorked then they should be ok since there's not much airspace between the wine and cork.

              1. re: mushroomaffairs

                I wouldn't serve them as a beverage at Christmas - unless your guests are already drunk, in which case they won't be able to taste them anyway. Doctoring them into sangria or Gluehwein could work, too.

                1. re: biondanonima

                  mulled wine was my first thought, too -- then I saw that the OP has a sensitivity.

              2. re: JKDLady

                I agree with JKDLady, beef bourguignon would be perfect (make it soon), but the red is really only suitable for cooking, not drinking. Perhaps if you mulled it for Christmas, you might not gag anyone, but you're unlikely to make friends. I personally think the whites will be just fine, but I don't really drink white wine, so you can't go by me.

              3. Use them to make sangria for christmas or new year's party. With fruits, sugar and brandy added, the wine probably won't matter as much

                1. storing a week in the fridge with stoppers will be no problem.

                  They may even improve a bit by breathing that little bit of air in the bottle. I've often noticed that the flavors of a partial bottle open up nicely stored like that. A week won't hurt.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Dave_in_PA

                    Agree with Dave. I often have wine on the weekend and cork and save the bottle in the fridge until the next weekend.

                  2. I would reduce to a concentrate (I usually take a whole bottle down to a quarter cup or so), then fridge or freeze. This concentrate is great to add to a dish that just needs a little something to perk it up, and it keeps forever.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: biondanonima

                      My neighbor was telling me last night that a friend of theirs reduces red to a syrup and then mixes it into ground beef before making "Napa burgers" on the grill. We'll be trying it next week. http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                      I usually use it for poached pears with sugar and cardamom in it and then reduce it to a syrup once the pears are done (and removed.) It is served over the pears on ice cream or pound cake.

                      1. re: biondanonima

                        Might that get around the OP's allergy to un- or barely cooked wines?

                      2. Whites, as long as they stay refrigerated will be fine, reds should survive but, taste before your guests arrive.

                        1. Thank you so much! I never thought about the sangria or mulled wine idea.

                          These wines were opened but not poured in any way. A friend of mine played bartender and opened up several bottles at once so that people could easily serve themselves.

                          I'm going to go the wine punch route. :)

                          1. I would not serve wine that has been open for 4+ weeks for drinking unless you have a vacuum system for extracting the air, which you evidently do not. The wine should be fine for cooking for many weeks, if not months. Given your alcohol sensitivities, I agree with the suggestions to use up the reds in braise-type preparations where the alcohol should cook off. As to the whites, they can be used in risottos (and there may be fish stew recipes too where you could use them).

                            1. I'd hate to toss for sure. Would probably freeze in ice cube trays and pop out into zip bags. In a perfect world, would have freezer space for small containers... maybe 1/2 c each, for easy retrieval later.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: kseiverd

                                You can freeze wine in containers and it will be just fine when you thaw it:

                              2. vino spaghetti with the reds http://www.davidrocco.com/recipes/pas...

                                sangria ice cubes with the Bogle

                                poach fish with the whites
                                http://dricksramblingcafe.blogspot.co...

                                1. You can turn a ten dollar bottle of red wine into a twenty dollar bottle simply by decanting it a few times. They even sell little gizmos (fancy word for a ss fine screen) that you pour the red wine through to 'aerate' it. This actually improves the flavor of red wine. I take a bottle of 'plonk' and pour it into a ss bowl then use a funnel to pour it back into the bottle. I do this a few times. It works.
                                  So with your red wine a couple of hours before serving it (you don't need to refrigerate it) give both bottles as good shake and decant a couple of times and serve. "This is some red left over from a few days ago. Don't worry. No one drank from the bottles. LOL"

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: Puffin3

                                    Two short ruless: chill swill, and decant violently. If it's not all that great, make sure it's cold, and make sure you up-end the bottle when decanting. Nobody will know better if the cold has killed all the flavors.

                                    You can make crummy wine less objectionable, but you can't make it great.

                                  2. save it for cooking, or give it to a foodie friend who would want to cook with it if you can't partake of it that way