There have been many burning questions for Floridians since Hurricane Irma brushed us on Sunday, but for many of us this one is of paramount importance:
If your wine is in the fridge when the power goes out, and it gets warm again, can you still re-refrigerate and drink it?
OK, so the answer may not be quite as crucial as knowing what your wind storm insurance will cover (never enough even after that hefty deductible) and how many mini bags of Cheetos an adult human can consume in a two-hour window during a storm (eight at the minimum).
Wine tends to hate sudden fluctuations in temperature as much as we hate sudden fluctuations in wind speed. Chances are your palate isn’t sophisticated enough to notice (and by “your” I mean “my”). But we have been through enough in the past few days. We need to know if our wine, unlike our trees, our fences and our sanity, will survive.
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Dr. Vinny is a practical guy. He seems to think this chilling, then warming, then rechilling thing is not a big issue. “Typically, that is fine, but I wouldn’t recommend doing that a hundred times, nor would I recommend doing that multiple times if the temperature of the room is wicked hot.” We would recommend not using the phrase “wicked hot” or people will suspect you’re a Patriots fan, Dr. Vinny. But thanks for the knowledge.
Adam Teeter, co-founder of @VinePair, agrees with this assessment.
“It’s perfectly fine to move your vino out of the fridge for a bit and put it back once you have more room, as long as you don’t do it with the same bottle too many times,” he writes. “Repeated temperature fluctuation is never good for any beverage, especially one as sensitive as wine can be, but as long as you aren’t cooling the wine down too much, or taking it out of the fridge and placing it in a hot closet or garage, it should be fine when you finally get around to popping the cork.”
Of course, when the next hurricane comes around — and you know it will — you may forget all this, so remember this handy rule: No matter how many times you’ve chilled it and re-chilled it, it’s still wine. Drink up.