Different Forms Of Wine Preservation

Different Forms Of Wine Preservation


There are basically two different ways that wine can be preserved, or protected from oxygen.

Vacuum/Pump – The use of a vacuum or pump on a bottle of wine will simply remove the air out of the bottle. This is the most basic form of preservation and probably the most common. This can be done manually with a pump, such as the Vacu Vin, and a stopper that is equipped to work with that particular pump. Once the air is removed some people prefer to put their bottle either back in a wine cellar or even a standard refrigerator to help avoid it getting “cooked”. There are also preservation units that will automatically vacuum the air out of the bottle, such as the EuroCave Wine Art, and will also offer temperature control for multiple bottles. You can expect your wine to last about 7-10 days after it has been opened using this form of preservation.

Inert Gas/Cartridge Systems – The inert gas that is used for wine preservation products is always heavier than air. Therefore, by pumping a specified amount of it into an opened bottle of wine it basically creates a blanket over the wine protecting it from the surrounding oxygen. There are a few different gases and combination of gases that are used, but Argon and Nitrogen are certainly the most popular and effective. The jury is out on which works better but by using this method a bottle can last from a week to a month. With many of these systems that displace the gas in the bottle some form of a stopper is required as well. Of course these gases will dissipate after a given amount of time so they will not protect wine forever.

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From his first sips of wicker basket Chianti at his grandfather’s dinner table to a 1986 Premier Cru Gevrey-Chambertin, Tilden knew that there was something magical about wine. He earned his Diploma in Wine and Spirits from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust and is a Certified Specialist of Wine with the Society of Wine Educators. Having been with Wine Enthusiast catalog since 2005, when he is not writing about wine he also runs the wine storage division and is head of W.E.’s in-house education program.