Regarded as light to the touch and sweet to the taste, champagne is known as celebrations’ favorite partner, it’s elegant and classical. From the pop to the bubbles to the toast, champagne is slimming and special, and importantly, it’s healthy! You must certainly know a thing or two of that which I speak.
For centuries, champagne has retained its position as the preferred choice for celebration. Royal celebrations, national, sporting, and even fashionable events are a few that send champagne in. Irrespective of the ceremony, the drink has to be champagne, and most will insist, no bubbly, no celebrations.
Whether you are obsessed with wine or not, most folks enjoy drinking it, and especially when they’ve got to celebrate an achievement or an event. Little wonder it’s regarded as a “drink of jubilation.” The never-ending quest for champagne makes an overwhelmingly large number of people seek to know some essential details about the wine. What are those details you might ask?
Due to the love most have for wine, before they head to the supermarket to purchase champagne in bulk and store it long-term, it’s really not out place to want to know if it could remain good for months and months to come.
Let’s begin with one of the ultimate questions that are often being asked which is:
Does Champagne go bad?
Frankly speaking, yes! However, it’s experimented that some champagne can last up to two decades. Amazing, right? Absolutely! So you may wonder? What makes it go bad?
Joe Wills, who is a certified Sommelier, WSET advanced certification with 17 quality years of wine service and retail experience, explains that an adequately stored wine will change in many positive ways, and a poorly stored wine doesn’t worth a taste and drinking could be fatal.
Joe sternly warns that you should never let your champagne be in the refrigerator for more than six months. If you did want to chill, then drink he further adds. What do Joe’s points teach you? When you purchase wine with no intent of drinking in it in a few months’ time, store it in a dark and fresh (not necessarily in the refrigerator) place.
Another noteworthy point worthy is the brand and label of the product. Likely though, it’s entirely possible that most champagne when properly stored will span a few years while the expensive brands will certainly go decades when precautions are taken.
The bottom line is that champagne is produced to last long-term usage, and I can’t go wrong stating so.
So, my advice is this, when you need to buy in bulk, visit a trusted store that is sure of the disgorgement date. More to the point, be sure that the store sells through inventory on a regular basis or has experienced or knowledgeable salespersons. And when you bring them home, keep away from direct sunlight
When you do these, you can beat your chest that your stored wine hasn’t gone wrong, but in contrast, has gained rich characteristics. Nevertheless, the question of how long you can keep champagne has been left unanswered. Well, the next point will be precise about that.
Does Champagne Expire?
Earlier on I explained that when wine isn’t stored correctly or adequately, it would only last a short period. For your proper understanding, I’ll give a simple chart. Before I’ll put you through that, here are a few things to note.
The vast majority of champagne is non-vintage and its intended to be consumed just after purchase, whereas, vintage wine can last more years without degradation.
More importantly, a point to note is that the label imprint on the body of the bottle isn’t the year it was bottled; instead, it’s the year the grapes used for the production was harvested.
This chart below explains further how unopened champagne lasts.
- Champagne Lasts 3-4 years
- Vintage Champagne lasts 20+ years
This expiry date should remain evergreen in your heart as you make your purchase. While thinking about the intended reason(s) for buying it, it’s vital that you are aware of the best ways to store unopened champagne accurately. Let’s get to see that.
How Long Can You Keep Champagne?
Remember, I made it blunt that champagne remains a good idea, not merely because I say so, that’s what it is! It’s celebratory and refreshing!
You perhaps may be aware that real champagne comes from the Champagne region of France. Otherwise, I’ll usually call it Fizzy wine. This little talk about its history and origin leads us to consider vintage and non-vintage wine! Does that have anything to do with the longevity of the champagne?
Simply put, vintage wine means that the wine was made from just a year’s harvest, on the other hand, non-vintage wine is produced by blending the harvest of many years. With this knowledge, I’ll explain what this information has to do with the longevity.
Vintage Champagne doesn’t suggest eternal shelf life, and for a fact, it can go wrong. Vintage can stay for five years or a decade howbeit when it remains unopened, however, when it’s opened, you must re-cork it, refrigerate, and keep for three to five days. At that, it can maintain a good drink, but what about non-vintage champagne? A similar state?
You might hurriedly suggest that non-vintage champagne wouldn’t have a lovely shelf life? Interestingly, it has something a little bit identical to vintage champagne; it has a good shelf life from purchase. Vintage champagne can last for three to four years. If properly stored and after being opened, it can last for three to five days without getting spoilt; it’s best you keep in a cool and dry place though.
Now that I’ve put you through the longevity of both vintage and non-vintage champagne, you might be curious to know if champagne gets better with age. To answer that, I’ll take you back to what Joe said at the onset of the article.
Does Champagne Get Better With Age?
You’d be expecting a blunt and direct answer, not so? It should be noted that this question is packed with a lot of complexity. Why? It’s pretty simple: it’s controversial, but you can understand why.
Joe wills, explains that personal preferences should go ahead of critical evaluation. And that makes sense. Only a few have tasted a wide array of champagne in differing condition. Therefore, only professionals can correctly guide these less experienced individuals.
Hugh Johnson, an experienced wine writer insists that non-vintage wine should be purchased in quantity so you can gain appealing characteristics of an aged wine. Speaking further, some ignorant folks think oxidation, however, that’s not it, although oxidation creates a depth of deep flavor.
Moreover, an expert Bruce Sanderson who reviews champagne for wine spectator agrees that wine can age well. Before disgorgement, the presence of high acidity and carbon dioxide may work as preservatives as the wine ages. Although, he stressed on proper storage and keeping away from direct sunlight.
However, it should be noted that some wines will be lean, excessively sharp just moments after the initial release, and becomes more enjoyable after a considerable length of time. So, simply put, aged and complex champagne would be effective.
The final verdict is that some vintage wine can get better with age, be sure to keep them in a cool, dry place. Ultimately, a more complex and Aroma flavor would develop after being aged for more than 20 years.
We’ve spoken about the how well champagne can last but have you ever thought about the expiration? Maybe it’s just occurring to you now that I mentioned it. Well, your information about champagne going bad would be incomplete if I would fail to speak on the expiration date. For that reason, I’ll answer that question does champagne expire?
The Best Ways to Store Unopened Champagne
Most writers might be keen about having a wine cellar for proper storage. Notwithstanding, I’m of the opinion that it’s not necessarily needed. In fact, storing it well without a wine cellar is straightforward.
For short-term storage, the bottles must be kept standing; additionally, it must be in a dark room. For long-term storage, you should let the wine bottles stay right inside the wine rack and also, containers must be kept far off from bright or artificial light. If you are so keen about the temperature at which you can accurately do this. Here are the figures for your use.
The best Temperature for Storage: It should range between 44 degrees Fahrenheit to 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Bear in mind that the Kitchen isn’t the best place to keep the bottles because it will be susceptible to fluctuating temperature.
Also, the size of the bottles can play a significant role in the storage period. It’s experimented that half-bottles especially do not have a considerable age length. As a result, they shouldn’t be stored upright, but horizontally, and again, the quality can be jeopardized if left for a very long time.
Impressively, bottles of 750 ml age exceptionally well, and those of 1.5liters do better. Curious to know why? It’s easy: The wine storage surface ratio allows for a constant flow of bubbles and an even maturation.
Having known this, you should know the signs that tell you that wine is bad so you won’t commit a horrible mistake (wink). It’s a mistake when you throw away good champagne! (That’s for me though).
Signs That Show That Champagne is bad
It’s quite unfortunate that many folks throw off Champagne merely because they aren’t sure of how long it’s been kept; this frequently happens after its being opened- they sometimes forget when it was uncorked.
Let’s face it, only a few people keep records of dates and functions, and as a result, the year you opened a bottle of wine might be the least you’d do, I don’t remember doing that either.
It should be noted that proper food safety techniques and hygiene will prevent any foodborne illness. Then, how would you know? The taste! It will taste sour and flat. At that point, it’s not suitable for consumption.
So, when next you are thinking about if your champagne has gone bad, check the label, the day you bought it, and the taste. Remember, it’s a shame to throw off good champagne; it’s even more horrible to consume a bad one too.
I’ve used my quality experience and research culled with wine experts’ points and comments to put you through a comprehensive understanding of champagne’s longevity and expiration.
Additionally, I’ve highlighted brilliantly how you can ensure that your wine is stored correctly and how you can figure out bad champagne.
It’s time to use this knowledge you’ve gained in educating others.
Planning a big event in months or years ahead? You can always offer your guest a fantastic pleasure of taste and flavor by purchasing Champagne using all these information correctly.
Is it a must you become a Champagne fan before you can make a purchase for your event? No! However, if you are not a fan now, you had better become one soon, because you are definitely missing on the real deal.