I found about a dozen bottles of my father's home made wine. My father passed away some time ago and I would like to restore the wine as a keepsake since I am not a wine drinker. Originally it was made from zinfandel grapes in oak brandy barrels. It has been stored in a dark, cool basement but the bottles were righ side up when I found them.

There is a lot of sediment at the bottom of the bottles but I opened one and the aroma was very nice, at least to me it seemed to be. Unfortunately I do not know the age. Some of the bottles may be over 30 years. It is a mix of years. I hate to throw it out but there is concern from a food safety perspective. Can any process be used to "restore" the wine such as filtration so I can keep it. I suspect not but it does not hurt to ask an expert. I don't like the idea of having something he made just sit in a bad way.

1 Answer 1


This is pure speculation, but here is what I think. The wine is either palatable or not. The traditional way to deal with sediment is decanting. This is where the wine is slowly poured into a container (a decanter) while observing the sediment, usually with a bright light behind the bottle. The idea is to stop pouring just before the sediment escapes. You lose some liquid in the process. I suppose you could try pouring through a coffee filter too. Once decanted the wine should probably be drunk within a day or two.

Fine wine is often aged for 30 years, but it is very likely the wine is spoiled or at least well past its prime. The alcohol in the wine should keep it safe to drink, but since it was home made I can only speculate about that.

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