Liquor Laboratory

How to Store Tequila: Complete Guide (2023 Updated)

How to Store Tequila

Last Updated on February 11, 2024 by Lydia Martin

If you want to have a stocked home bar for the occasional cocktail party, it is important to understand how to store your tequila to keep its flavor. Discover how you can properly store every bottle of tequila to extend its shelf life. 

Our team enthusiastically researched the best ways on how to store tequila.

7 Things To Consider When Storing Tequila 

7 Things To Consider When Storing Tequila 

1. Use Boxes From Your Liquor Store

Tequila Bottles with box

Use boxes from your liquor store to pack up your tequila collection. You’ll want something that stops bottles from moving around, like this box. Because the goal is to keep things snug, fill any gaps between bottles with newspaper or tissue paper.

2. Store Your Tequila In A Dark Place

Tequila prefers a relatively cool place and dark environment. If you don’t have access to a liquor cabinet, keep them at room temperature and in a dark place away from light and heat.

Wide temperature changes might degrade the flavor of your tequila. A cool place preserves your tequila longer.

3. Never Put Opened Bottles of Tequila In Direct Sunlight

Jose Cuervo Tequila

Keep tequila at room temperature, in a dry place, and away from direct heat or sunlight to extend its shelf life. Keep it firmly wrapped when not in use. Once a bottle is opened, the contents may slowly start to evaporate or eventually oxidize. It will change the taste, aroma, and alcohol content of tequila [1].

4. Use Rooms With Climate Control

Shelf for Alcohols

Choose a climate-controlled storage facility if you plan to keep tequila for a long time. Hot and humid environments may affect their taste. When drinking high-quality tequila, it should be kept at room temperature to preserve the aromas and components tequila has.

The general rule for hard liquors like whiskey, vodka, and tequila is to store them at room temperature. The ideal room temp is slightly lower, between 60 and 55 degrees. 

5. Don’t Stack Tequila Boxes

Don’t stack tequila boxes on top of one other or anything else, for that matter. They should always be positioned towards the rear of your storage container, on the floor.  

Also Read:

6. Don’t Store It In The Freezer

Frozen Tequila Cocktail

It is not recommended to store your tequila in the freezer. You will be unable to smell the fragrances of the tequila if it’s too cold.

Dessert wines and vermouths, such as vin santo and ice wine, have longer refrigerator shelf life than regular wine counterparts. They won’t become sour in a span of a few days. 

With the notable exception of already-opened vermouth since it’s a fortified wine, almost every liquor mentioned in this post can and should be stored without refrigeration.

Also Read: Can Tequila Freeze?

7. If Possible, Don’t Store Opened Bottles Too Long

Tequila, in general, has an unlimited life. However, you’ve opened the bottle at least once. The tequila should be consumed within a year or a few months. 

Or else, oxidation will start to affect the taste of the liquor if it’s kept for too long. This is roughly how long the liquor remains at its peak quality. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Can you store tequila in a plastic bottle?

Storing tequila in a plastic bottle is generally not recommended for long-term storage. Tequila, particularly higher-quality varieties, is often bottled in glass to prevent any potential interaction between the spirit and the container. Glass is inert, meaning it doesn’t affect the flavor or quality of the tequila. Plastic bottles, on the other hand, may allow for subtle chemical interactions that could alter the taste over time.

If you transfer tequila to a plastic container for short-term use or transportation, ensure the plastic is food-grade and specifically designed for alcoholic beverages. For long-term storage, it’s advisable to keep tequila in its original glass bottle, stored in a cool, dark place to preserve its intended characteristics.

How long is tequila good for after opening?

After opening, tequila can remain good for an extended period, often several years, if stored properly. It’s crucial to reseal the bottle tightly and store it in a cool, dark place to minimize oxidation and maintain the quality of the spirit. While tequila doesn’t technically expire, the flavor may evolve over time.

Regularly checking for any changes in color, clarity, or unusual odors before consumption can help ensure the tequila remains enjoyable and safe to drink. Proper storage conditions play a vital role in extending the shelf life of opened tequila, allowing enthusiasts to savor its distinct taste for an extended duration.

Should tequila be refrigerated?

Tequila does not need to be refrigerated. In fact, refrigeration is unnecessary and may even impact the flavor negatively. Tequila is best stored at room temperature in a cool, dark place away from direct sunlight.

Proper storage conditions help maintain the integrity of the spirit and preserve its intended flavors and characteristics.

How long does tequila last after opened?

Once opened, tequila can last for an extended period, often several years, if stored properly. The key is to keep the bottle tightly sealed and store it in a cool, dark place to minimize oxidation and maintain the quality of the spirit.

While it doesn’t technically expire, the flavor may gradually change over time.

Is tequila better chilled or room temperature?

The preference for serving tequila chilled or at room temperature is subjective. Generally, high-quality tequilas can be enjoyed both ways. Chilling tequila can slightly mute its flavors, making it smoother for some drinkers. However, sipping tequila at room temperature allows for a fuller expression of its complex flavor profile.

Experimenting with both temperatures can help individuals discover their personal preference.

Can you leave tequila unrefrigerated?

Yes, tequila can be safely stored unrefrigerated at room temperature. Refrigeration is unnecessary and may even dull its flavors. Storing tequila in a cool, dark place away from direct sunlight ensures it maintains its intended characteristics without undergoing unnecessary changes.

Whether it’s a blanco, reposado, or añejo, proper storage conditions contribute to a more enjoyable tequila-drinking experience.

What makes tequila go bad?

Several factors can contribute to tequila going bad. Exposure to excessive heat, light, or air can cause the spirit to deteriorate over time. Poor storage conditions, such as storing the bottle upright or in direct sunlight, can result in changes to color, flavor, and aroma. Additionally, contamination or using subpar ingredients during the production process can impact the quality of the tequila.

Does tequila expire in the freezer?

Tequila does not technically expire, but storing it in the freezer can alter its characteristics. While the alcohol content prevents it from freezing, chilling tequila can lead to a thicker, more viscous consistency. This change in texture does not necessarily indicate spoilage, but it may affect the overall drinking experience.

It’s generally recommended to store tequila at room temperature or slightly chilled for optimal taste.

How can you tell if tequila is good?

Identifying good tequila involves assessing its color, aroma, and taste. Quality tequila should have a clear and consistent color, a pleasant and distinctive aroma, and a smooth, well-balanced taste.

Tequilas labeled as “100% agave” often indicate superior quality, as they are made entirely from agave without added sugars or artificial ingredients.

Do you drink tequila straight?

Yes, many people enjoy drinking tequila straight, especially high-quality varieties. Sipping tequila neat allows individuals to appreciate its complex flavor profile without the influence of mixers.

However, personal preferences vary, and some may choose to enjoy tequila in cocktails or with a splash of water.

Does tequila go bad in room temperature?

Tequila stored at room temperature is generally stable and does not go bad if stored correctly. Proper storage involves keeping the bottle sealed tightly, away from direct sunlight, and in a cool, dark place.

Monitoring for any changes in color, clarity, or unusual odors is essential to ensure the tequila remains of high quality and suitable for consumption.

How long can tequila sit?

Tequila can sit for an extended period, and when stored properly, it doesn’t have a strict expiration date. Unopened bottles can last indefinitely if kept in a cool, dark place. Once opened, tequila remains drinkable for several years, but its flavor may evolve over time.

Proper storage involves resealing the bottle tightly, storing it away from direct sunlight, and ensuring a cool environment.

Does tequila go bad in room temperature?

Tequila stored at room temperature is generally stable and does not spoil if stored correctly. Proper storage conditions include keeping the bottle sealed tightly, away from direct sunlight, and in a cool, dark place. Monitoring for any changes in color, clarity, or unusual odors is crucial to ensuring the tequila remains of high quality and suitable for consumption.

How do you properly drink tequila?

Properly drinking tequila involves sipping it neat or with minimal accompaniments to appreciate its distinct flavors. High-quality tequilas, especially those labeled as “100% agave,” are often enjoyed neat to experience their complex profiles. Some may prefer sipping it with a slice of lime or an accompaniment of salt.

Tequila can also be used in cocktails, but appreciating it straight allows connoisseurs to fully grasp its unique characteristics.

Does tequila mix need to be refrigerated after opening?

Tequila mix, such as pre-made margarita mix, may need refrigeration after opening. Check the label for specific storage instructions, as some mixes contain perishable ingredients that require refrigeration to prevent spoilage.

It’s essential to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations to ensure the mix remains safe and enjoyable.

Does tequila go bad if you take it out of the freezer?

Taking tequila out of the freezer does not make it go bad. Tequila does not freeze due to its alcohol content. However, chilling it in the freezer can alter its viscosity and texture. Storing tequila at room temperature or slightly chilled is generally recommended for optimal flavor and drinking experience.

So, How To Store Tequila?

Like vodka, tequila has an indefinite life span if stored properly. It is perfectly safe to keep them at room temperature. Keep them away from heat or sunlight. Also, secure them in a safe place. You can use boxes from your house or your store. 

Now, get your shot glass, enjoy a small sip of tequila straight away and drink it like a fine wine. And remember, drink tequila responsibly!

References: 

  1. https://www.winemag.com/2019/04/09/wine-oxidation/ 
  2. https://www.researchgate.net/post/Is-alcoholic-preparations-interact-with-plastic-container-and-become-toxic 
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