While it’s not an issue that comes up regularly when you have leftover wine that you’re not going to drink there are ways you can avoid it going to waste.
There is certainly no shortage of wine preservation solutions, from Vacu-Vin to Coravin, but, if you’re out of Argon capsules or stoppers and don’t feel like another glass, with these nifty kitchen hacks you can use up the remainder of any bottles that might otherwise be destined for the sink.
If you’re looking for ways to reduce food/drink waste and cook smarter, chef Ben Ebbrell is very much the man for the job.
“If you have a glass or so that you won’t drink immediately… why not freeze it into ‘pucks’. Use the bottom of ramekins or large ice cube trays… about 50-75ml each. Then, once frozen they can be loosened from the container and stored in a freezer bag to use in sauces or to deglaze pans whenever you need just a splash!”
Next time you cook steak (or any meat for that matter), while the meat is resting, add a cube of red wine to deglaze the fond, perhaps with a handful of finely diced shallots. Then mount with a few cubes of cold butter to thicken, and you have an easy but delicious sauce.
Alternatively (though maybe not if you just got a glass left, but perhaps if you’re not keen on the whole bottle to begin with) you can let nature take its course for a long, but relatively easy, project: why not try making your own flavoured and fancy vinegars?
“Use leftover alcohol (of any kind) and encourage the souring of it with a mother SCOBY [symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast], essentially turning alcohol into acetic acid. Sounds like tricky science, but it’s so natural and a completely hands-off approach. Then you’ll have delicious artisanal vinegars for months to use to elevate your cooking or as beautiful and thoughtful gifts.”