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leftover bottle of wine

Leftover wine, ideas on what to do with it

The idea of leftover wine may sound ridiculous for many of us here at Stanlake Park, but whether you’ve just had a party or simply can’t manage that final bottle, at some point you’ll be facing this dilemma: a partially consumed bottle is rattling around your kitchen and the clock is ticking on its drinkability.  

Once opened, wine immediately starts to oxidise — a process that causes chemical disintegration and results in a drink that’s faded in colour and less potent in flavour and has lost its lustre.  Basically, it won’t make you ill but just doesn’t taste as good as it did.

The shelf life of wine depends largely on the type you’re using. Is it red, white, or sparkling? Even how dry or sweet your wine is has an impact on how long it’ll last.  Generally red wines hold up better than whites, and aged varieties outlast younger ones, so drink up your Pinot Grigio before moving on to the Malbec. Young wines should hold up for 3 or 4 days and older wines for about a week. The exceptions are dessert wines and port, which can last up to a year after being opened.

A few things to do with the rest of that bottle

The good news is that you don‘t have to waste wine and pour it away.  Even if you’re unsure what to do with it at the time you can always make it into ice cubes until you decide on what to do with it or when you need it.  The most common option is to cook with wine unless it’s been left a little too long and doesn’t taste good at all.  

You can make vinegar with this type of wine which may sound obvious especially as the word vinegar (vin-aigre) is French for ‘sour wine’.  All you need to do is to dilute it with an equal part of water and cover thus allowing mother nature to take care of the rest of the process.

A simple recipe and one that can be adapted for other meals/starters is to add it to a sauce.  Here is a simple recipe for a mushroom sauce served with halloumi on Bruschetta which will taste delicious with added leftover wine.  Even I can cook this one so give it a go and impress your loved ones :-

My leftover wine recipe


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 350 g diced mushrooms 
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 200 g halloumi cut into 1/2 cm slices
  • Small baguette cut into around 9 x 1 slices
  • 100 ml leftover wine
  • 50 ml single cream
  • 3 tbsp fresh parsley chopped
  • Salt
  • Black pepper


Heat the olive oil in a frying pan, and add the mushrooms and garlic. Cook over a fairly low heat for 5 minutes, until the mushrooms are soft. 

Then add the white wine, and bring to a gentle simmer. Cook for a further 5 minutes, until there isn’t too much excess liquid left over.

White the mushrooms are cooking, put the slices of halloumi in a single layer in a different, dry frying pan, and place over a medium heat. Cook for around 5 minutes – the halloumi will release some liquid, and once this liquid has cooked off, the cheese will begin to brown. When the underside is nice and golden, flip the halloumi slices over and repeat with the other side (note: this side will cook a lot more quickly than the first side!).

Place the baguette slices on a baking tray and grill (broil) for a couple of minutes each side, until golden brown and crispy.

When the white wine has cooked right down, add the cream, and cook for a couple more minutes until the sauce is thick. 

Add the fresh parsley, and season with a touch of salt and plenty of black pepper.

To plate the bruschetta, add a slice of halloumi to each piece of baguette, and top with the mushroom mixture and extra fresh parsley. Serve immediately.

If you want something a little more substantial, just pour the mushroom sauce over pasta to make a flavoursome meal.

Do you have other ideas on what to do with leftover wine? Share it in the comments below!

Passionate about music, craft beer and wine but loves travel and food too especially Staffordshire oatcakes!