Why You Should Never Leave White Wine In The Freezer

We've all been there: On your way to dinner at a friend's house, you pick up a bottle of white wine, only to arrive and realize your room temp Pinot Grigio isn't exactly the refreshing bev you had in mind. So you pop it in the freezer, thinking it will cool down faster than if you just stuck it in the fridge.

But it's actually a really terrible idea to put white wine, particularly sparkling wine, in the fridge. Not only can it ruin the texture and flavor of the wine (affecting carbonation, which is the entire reason to get a bottle of sparkling wine), but if you leave it in for too long, the cork could pop or the glass could shatter from the pressure change. It would still take an hour in the freezer to reach its ideal temperature, and the risks of ruining your wine (and creating a giant mess) simply aren't worth it.

How to chill white wine fast

It takes about three hours in the fridge for white wine to chill — you're aiming for a temperature of around 45 degrees Fahrenheit. This will depend on the ambient temperature, of course. If your wine is colder going in, it will cool down faster. Actually, if it is really cold outside, you might consider sticking your bottle of wine on the balcony to chill if your fridge is full. Wine fridges are also a logical answer, but do you actually know anyone who has one?

However, if you're in a pinch, the fastest way to chill wine is to submerge it in an ice bath. This is why you so often see champagne placed in an ice bucket, which can appropriately chill white or sparkling wine in as little as 20 minutes. Don't have a bucket or cooler? Fill your sink with ice for a makeshift version.

How to freeze wine

Now, there are some circumstances in which you may want to store white wine in the freezer. If you plan on making a frozen wine cocktail, such as a slushy sangria, feel free to freeze your wine, but don't leave it in the bottle. Instead, pour it into a pan with high sides and allow it to freeze. You can then scoop it out with an ice cream scoop for an easy and refreshing drink.

You can also freeze wine in an ice cube tray to create individual portions of wine for cooking — perfect for making a vino Sgroppino, aka lemon sorbet cocktail. This is also a great way to avoid waste if you only need a small amount to deglaze a pan, but don't plan on drinking the rest of the bottle. Once frozen, you can store your wine cubes in a plastic bag or Tupperware container. If you plan on cooking with fresh herbs and have some extra, throw those in with the cubes of ice to help preserve them. These cubes should last for at least three months.