"Recorking" larger bottles of already opened beer

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by luckytalisman, Mar 5, 2013.

  1. What's the guidance on "recorking" or saving what's left of an already opened beer? I most always finish my larger bottles on the day I open them, but sometimes I just don't want as much, and would prefer to save the rest for another day. For example, I have a 650ml bottle of Deschutes The Abyss, and I'm not going to be able to (or really want to) finish it all in one session. How much smell/flavor/mouthfeel is lost by saving it in the fridge for a day or two?
  2. beerinmaine

    beerinmaine Aficionado (225) Maine Jun 20, 2009

    Use a good bottle stopper and you'll be fine.

    Don't believe anyone who says the beer will be automatically ruined.
    robwestcott and luckytalisman like this.
  3. NiceTaps

    NiceTaps Advocate (500) New Jersey Nov 21, 2011

    Get one of these..it's all you need. And it comes with simple instructions!
  4. Thanks for the advice. For how long can a bottle stopper preserve a beer such as a pale ale or imperial stout?
  5. Willbfun

    Willbfun Aficionado (150) New York Sep 28, 2012

    I keep a few corks around that I can refit in to the bottle top but only so I can keep it in the fridge while I'm enjoying a glass. Two Inexpensive Tawny Port corks also Unita most likely Labyrinth & a Unibroue Quelque Chose which can also be drank hot in the winter. Hope you enjoy the Abyss havn't had that one myself yet. Prost~
    luckytalisman likes this.
  6. I've used bottle stoppers to keep things good for an additional day or two, but I've found that when I wait longer, the beer doesn't have the same taste to it. It's not necessarily flat, but it seems a bit more bland.
    JrGtr and luckytalisman like this.
  7. Ri0

    Ri0 Poobah (1,120) Wisconsin Jul 1, 2012 Verified

    Where can you buy one or what is the name?
    RobertColianni and luckytalisman like this.
  8. gshak

    gshak Advocate (530) Texas Feb 20, 2011

    Bottle stoppers generally work for most beers except the pale ales, IPAs, DIPAs. Those beers are way too sensitive to exposure. So long as it's not those beers you are trying to keep fresh, you're fine.
    luckytalisman likes this.
  9. NiceTaps

    NiceTaps Advocate (500) New Jersey Nov 21, 2011

    It's called a 'vacuum wine saver' and is available at Bed, Bath, and Beyond for about $10 ( plastic, non-stainless steel version). It includes the vac and two stoppers. And yes, it works great on beer bottles, giving at least a few days
    of life after opening.
    luckytalisman likes this.
  10. COBeerBuff

    COBeerBuff Savant (380) Kansas Jan 4, 2009 Verified

    I would not recommend one of these, as sucking the air/carbonation out of a beer is the exact opposite of what you want.

    You're much better off getting one of these http://www.amazon.com/HomeAndWine-com-Flip-Top-Bottle-Stopper/dp/B0027HPR5W/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top (but find one cheaper...these can be had for under $2).
    MDDMD, jtmartino, richardflyr and 5 others like this.
  11. COBeerBuff

    COBeerBuff Savant (380) Kansas Jan 4, 2009 Verified

    I would agree with skycracksopen that any longer than a few days can impart off flavors to the beer. That being said, I have a friend that uses the wine stopper I linked above regularly, and when aged in his "mystery fridge of wonders", he claims bottles have improved immeasurably over a two week period. (I wouldn't suggest this...)
    luckytalisman likes this.
  12. tweezer159

    tweezer159 Savant (300) Alabama May 2, 2008

    I'll start off by saying that I never save beer overnight unless its in a growler ( I try not to do that), but if I did I would use a new cap and a wing capper that can be purchased from a home brew shop. If its a corked bottle, you can get those wine stoppers that have a small lever on the top, that expand the stopper to create a complete seal. If your very serious, I believe home brew shops also sell canned co2, which you could use to flush the oxygen out of the bottle before sealing.

    I agree that I would not use a vacuum pump sealer. It is creating negetive pressure in the bottle and will pull the carbonation out of the beer.
    1up and luckytalisman like this.
  13. kzoobrew

    kzoobrew Champion (860) Michigan May 8, 2006

    Beer automatically ruined? No. Beer falling off and less enjoyable? Yes.

    There are better way to keep the beer but none are perfect. None is manage to keep the beer in the condition it was the night before. My rule, and the one I will advocate, don't one a bottle unless you can drink it in a night.
    gzaIPArza likes this.
  14. This wins the thread. Although on the vacuum pump thing - if the bottle is still half full or more, there should be more than enough carbonation to fill the evacuated headspace with CO2 pulled out of solution, without making the beer flat. Just pump until you smell heavily beer-scented gas being pumped out, and you solve the potential problems of quickly oxidizing the beer. The biggest issues with this IMO are that oxidation isn't much of an issue with most beers for the amount of time you're going to want to save them, and the cheapo pump sealers sometimes fail at being airtight, and then the leftovers are ruined. Expandable wine stoppers and wing cappers are both much more reliable methods, although I would probably still opt for a vacuum sealer if I was trying to save an IPA and oxidation, even over a 24 hour time period, was a significant concern.
  15. RoninTK3

    RoninTK3 Savant (310) New Hampshire Nov 12, 2012

    I just use one of these. Got a couple at my local bottle shop for a buck and change each. I've had varying success depending on beer style so you just have to kind of experiment and see what works. With IPAs I usually get less than 24 hours out of them, so they're fine if you're going to finish it with lunch the next day but not much longer than that. Big stouts, barleywines, and most Belgians have held out for a couple days.
  16. I often use a wine stop for beers these days and I don't think it changes anything. Two days is the max that I have left the beer after. I do it often with Sublimely Self Righteous, because 4 packs haven't made its way to N.H yet. Imperial IPAs are fine also.
  17. stealth

    stealth Advocate (680) Minnesota Dec 16, 2011 Verified

    This invariably leads to, which beers have you found to be improved after you let them sit in the fridge for a day or two with a stopper in them?

    My vote is The Dissident.
  18. BeerLover99

    BeerLover99 Advocate (745) Illinois Dec 13, 2008

    I have used a wine stopper only a few times, during my short craft beer journey (7yrs)
    and only seems to work for a day or so. The best luck I have had was with really
    boozy/high ABV bombers. One of the main reasons, why I try to share bombers with
    worthy friends and family.
  19. atomic

    atomic Savant (480) Illinois Sep 22, 2009 Verified

  20. Stugotzo

    Stugotzo Advocate (505) Florida Jun 13, 2012

    So how many bottles last night? ;)
  21. Zhiguli

    Zhiguli Savant (295) California Jul 12, 2012

    just put it in your face is how i see this problem
  22. kzoobrew

    kzoobrew Champion (860) Michigan May 8, 2006

    None, and I am offended you would even make such assumptions....

    They were cans and there were two of them.
    TheBeerAlmanac likes this.
  23. acurtis

    acurtis Poobah (1,255) New Jersey Sep 27, 2010

    24 hours and it should be ok, longer than that and it usually goes flat
  24. Davihaw

    Davihaw Savant (330) Illinois Jun 19, 2012

    Has anyone used the silicone beer caps? My local bottle shop uses them on the beers they have available for tastings for that day. They love them for every day use, but not sure how it would hold up over night or a few days. There is an easy way to fix this though, invite a buddy over and share the entire bottle in one sitting!
    Here is the link to the silicon bottle caps: http://www.amazon.com/Beer-Saver-Reusable-Silicone-Bottle/dp/B00467QN54/ref=pd_sim_hg_2
  25. gator79

    gator79 Savant (400) Florida Nov 1, 2008 Verified

    I just use a simple rubber wine stopper. The rubbed ones. Works very well for saving for the next day. I can't say past that as I always drink a bomber within 2 days of opening.
    KostyaK likes this.
  26. Can't say I've ever been one to save any bombers from my own stash. I will say that had a friend not done this, I would never have had the opportunity to try Bolt Cutter.
  27. Bobheed

    Bobheed Savant (355) Texas Dec 27, 2010

    I've used a clamp-down champagne bottle stopper with great success. Beer was still carbonated 3 days later.

    KostyaK and YaKnowBrady like this.
  28. dano

    dano Aficionado (110) New Jersey Apr 13, 2012

    I use the $0.99 bottle stoppers from the liquor store and have enjoyed beer days later. And, anything is better than wasting it:eek:
  29. Jwale73

    Jwale73 Champion (750) Rhode Island Aug 15, 2007 Verified

  30. Never open a beer you're not prepared to drink!
  31. GameFreac

    GameFreac Savant (430) Georgia Apr 8, 2011

    Hypothetically if you had empty bottles for homebrew and you sanitized them with starsan, couldn't you just pour half the bomber into a 12 oz, cap it with real bottle cap and put it in the fridge for the next day? Or would that not work?
  32. otispdriftwood

    otispdriftwood Advocate (570) New York Dec 9, 2011 Verified

    Which is why it's called a Wine Vacuum Sealer. You want as much air as possible OUT of a wine bottle.
  33. Nectar

    Nectar Savant (310) New Jersey Jan 17, 2013

    My mother took a woodshop class for something to do 1 weeknight a week. I was surprised as she is not very crafty at all. I would constantly joke with her about it....

    Until she gave me 4 rubber wine stoppers with wooden handles that she turned herself on a lathe. Awesome mom is awesome
    redblacks75 likes this.
  34. This topic comes up every month or so. As you say, the vacuum stopper will do nothing more than reduce carbonation through its suction action. It's designed to remove gas and doesn't understand the difference between air and CO2.
    In fact there's damn all oxygen in the headspace of an opened beer bottle.It was full of CO2 before opening, removal of the seal will have caused more of it to come out of solution and being heavier than air will sit on top of the beer. Just seal off the bottle and all will be fine for a day or two.
    tai4ji2x and YaKnowBrady like this.
  35. That would work fine, though you'd lose some carb in the transfer. However a standard bomber takes a standard bottle cap, so you can just cap off the bomber itself and not worry about it ;)
  36. neverenoughhops

    neverenoughhops Aficionado (205) California Oct 22, 2009 Verified

    as has been said, the wine vac sealers will make things worse by flattening the beer. when you reduce the pressure above the beer, CO2 rushes out of solution.

    you'll have the easiest time with normal capped bottles. a simple homebrew capper, a $5 bag of 150 caps and some sanitizer solution will work very well for you.

    sure, the carbonation will suffer a bit and it might taste a little less fresh, but for many styles this will work very well when you finish the beer soon enough after opening it.
  37. YaKnowBrady

    YaKnowBrady Initiate (0) New Jersey Jul 23, 2010

    All you will ever need. You will get about 72 hours of remaining carbonation, albeit slightly diminished, properly using either of these with a 50% or more full bottle of any size:



    Total expenditure through Amazon: $12.46

    I've used both products for years with excellent results. The vacuum sealer will result in flat beer much more quickly. Internally expanding rubber stopper will also work well, as will manually recapping or recorking your bottles, though wasteful as the crown will no longer be usable after.
    robwestcott likes this.