You now have your beautiful new wine cooler – and absolutely love it and wonder how you ever managed without it – but you suddenly realise that you should give your thin wine fridge a jolly good clean. First, of course, you must take out the bottles of wine. When you have taken out all the wine bottles and removed the trays (check the User’s Manual to see how to do this), wash the inside of the cabinet with light soapy water. Next, rinse the whole cabinet with clean water, and Voila! You are done. To prevent mould and mildew, do not place the bottles flush against the back wall of the cabinet, but leave space to help air circulation.

Can you use the wine in opened bottles for cooking?

When you cleaned the wine cooler, you might have been mortified to see you had a few opened wine bottles. Do not fret. There is a myriad of recipes for wine. When you have finished cleaning the fridge, scroll through the recipes and use your opened wine for a scrumptious meal – your family will be so impressed! Adding wine to red meat dishes adds a robust yeasty flavour that works well in the winter.

Can you use wine that has gone bad?

There are great uses for wine that have gone bad. The best service for a “dead” red wine is a marinade. You can use red or white wine to spice up a meat or chicken dish, make a wine jelly, or reduce red wine. If you are more adventurous, perhaps you would like to use the red wine to learn how to tie-dye or make a fruit fly trap. You can also experiment with making your own vinegar from the wine. Find a good recipe, and you’ll probably find you prefer your vinegar to the vinegar you buy in the store. 

How do you know if the wine has gone bad?

Wine will go off after a day or two or might last up to five days if it is re-corked and stored in a cool place. The three main ways you can tell if a wine has gone bad are appearance, smell and taste. Appearance includes the cloudy wine, a change in colour, and the wine developing bubbles, indicating that the wine has fermented and is soured. You will be able to smell if your wine goes off – it will smell unpleasant and medicinal. Suppose you have missed the change of appearance or smell of your wine. You should undoubtedly notice intense or unusual flavours, such as a vinegary or caramelised flavour, or the wine tastes like horseradish.

How would you recycle wine corks?

A novel way to use your wine corks is to be creative in your garden. Remember to use only the natural, organic kind and not the plastic or silicone corks. Silicone or plastic is not environmentally friendly and takes away from the authenticity of wine corks. Corks can be used as mulch or compost. If you forget the names of plants, you can make your own plant markers using skewers and corks. If you feel creative, you can build a fairy garden or birdhouse. Let your creativity flow because the possibilities are endless.