Does Gin Go Bad? (Lifespan of Opened and Unopened Gin)

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Are you the type of person that loves the taste of gin? You are not alone. Many people do enjoy the taste of it. Many will drink it straight or with mixers of different types and love the taste of gin and tonics because they are so refreshing. Gin is also used to cook food if someone likes the taste of it in their cooking.

But before you get started, you will want to know how long gin can last when you have it opened or unopened. The good news is that if properly stored, you will get to enjoy your gin for a long time, in some cases indefinitely. Read on to find out more information about this spirit.

Table of Contents

Does Gin Go Bad?

No, gin does not go bad in many cases. You can retain the taste of your gin when you know what to do. It can last indefinitely when it has not been opened as long as you store it correctly. Opened it can last for several years and maybe longer, but over time can lose some of the original flavor.

You want to store it in a cool, dry place. A pantry or basement are both great places to keep your gin so that it is handy and will last a long time. Keep reading below for storage option tips.

Lifespan Of A Bottle Of Unopened Gin

An unopened bottle of gin will last you indefinitely. You will be glad that you have some on hand for yourself or for guests that might be visiting. Since many people love gin, they will be glad that you have their favorite brand for them to enjoy.

Lifespan Of An Opened Bottle Of Gin

An opened bottle of gin can also last for a while if properly stored, but we recommend consuming it within six months to a year. It will retain its taste during this time but can start to lose some of its original flavor profile after a while. So it is important that store it properly in all cases.

How Can You Tell If Your Gin Has Gone Bad?

If you leave your gin opened for too long, it can lose its taste. You want to make sure that you store it well but you will also need to check on it to see if it is still ok to drink. It doesn’t age with time.

There are two ways that you can tell if it has gone bad:


You want to check for impurities in the gin that you have opened and stored. Make sure that there are no foreign particles in your drink or you might have to discard it. Take a good look at it by holding it up to the light to see if there are particles that shouldn’t be in there. Storing it properly will ensure that nothing gets into it.

Taste and Smell

The taste and smell of the gin might be different if you have to store it for too long. In this case, you can add tonic to it to make a gin and tonic and still enjoy your gin. There are other mixers that you can also use for your pleasure. If that is not possible, then, you might want to throw it out.

Suggested reading: Do Flavored Gins Contain Sugar?

How to Store Gin

You will want to have your gin in storage to keep it from going bad. Gin is stored in a fairly simple manner compared to many other types of alcohol. The main thing that you need to consider is temperature.

Gin should always be stored in a dark place at room temperature. Make sure it is in a dry cool place. A pantry is a great place to store your gin whether it is opened or unopened. Make sure that you store the bottle upright too. This will make it last longer if it is opened.

If you have a basement, you can also store it there. If you have a bar, put it up there so that you can keep it handy for when you have a party or need a drink yourself. It’s also a good idea to keep it in a closet or a wine rack.

Make Sure It Is Always Stored Upright

Gin, whether opened or unopened, should be stored upright. When you do this, it will make it last a long time.

Storing Unopened Gin Bottles

Remember to always keep your gin in a cool and dry place. A panty or a basement are both excellent places to keep the gin so it will last a long time.

Place the gin in an area that has a stable temperature between 50 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit (10-21 degrees Celsius). Temperatures that are too low might not be ideal depending on how you prefer to drink gin. Temperatures that are too high can cause alcohol evaporation, which will change the flavors and aromas in the gin.

Keep the unopened bottle out of direct sunlight and away from any large heat sources such as heating vents, radiators and stoves. Extremes in temperature can change the color and flavor of the gin.

If you need more room, you can store your unopened bottles on their side, but it’s best to keep them upright.

While it’s unlikely to significantly affect the flavor, keep your gin bottles away from other strong-smelling items, such as cleaning supplies or perfumes because there is a chance they may penetrate through the glass. Also, have a storage area that is free of dust and dirt so the gin has an optimal storage environment.

If you aren’t planning to use your gin for a long time, such as if you buy a large amount of it on sale and don’t expect to drink it all before the bottle expires, take special precautions to preserve its flavor and quality.

Place an open box of baking soda in the storage area with the gin. The baking soda will absorb any odors that your gin comes in contact with, preventing them from impacting the taste of the alcohol.

Storing Opened Bottles of Gin

Keep opened bottles of gin for up to six months or longer. But understand that over time it may lose some of its original taste and flavor profile. Like unopened bottles of gin, to prolong the life of your open bottle, store it away from light and heat sources, such as an air-conditioned room or near a refrigerator, as well as away from strong-smelling items.

Storing Gin in a Decanter

If you are considering or have purchased a decanter, you can display your gin in this vessel for others to see and admire its color and clarity, but do not expect that keeping the bottle out on display will improve the quality of your gin.

Also, it is important to note that not all glass is created equally too, so you should avoid letting light enter through a window as this can affect your gin’s taste as well as its color over time.

In terms of storing gin in the decanter itself, we recommend that you always leave at least a quarter of an inch at the top. This is because gin will evaporate over time, which can affect the taste and even spoil the liquid if it has happened too much, plus you don’t want it to spill out if there is too much inside.

Bonus tip: the decanter must be kept airtight. Don’t keep a pourer on the bottle. You want to put the cap that it came with back on it so that you are able to keep it long.

Storing in a decanter is a good idea, especially if your original gin bottle is damaged or you lose the original cap.

For more information on decanters, read our articles How Do Whiskey Decanter Cleaning Beads Work? and Why Does My Whiskey Decanter Have Condensation?

Safety First When Storing Alcohol

Don’t forget that storage of alcohol at home requires attention to fire safety, drinking habits of children and other family members, storage space limits, potential infractions of local alcohol laws. At home, store your alcohol in a location out of the reach of children and away from heat.

In homes with young children, alcohol should be stored in a non-transparent container and kept under lock and key to prevent accidental poisoning or drinking. If an adult plans to consume any quantity of alcohol, it may be safer to store the liquor in a separate location outside their area of residence.

Other Storage Tips

Alcohol can be stored in either liquor cabinets or wine cabinets, which are designed specifically to safely store alcohol. Remember, it is recommended that all alcoholic beverages be stored in a cool place away from direct sunlight and heat sources.

Final Round

Knowing all of this about gin will allow you to keep your gin tasting great for a really long time. Make sure that you choose your storage options wisely and always have them on hand for when guests come to call.

One thing that could be fun is if you are having some friends over for a dinner party or some other smaller gathering, you may want to consider getting your guests involved in making gin cocktails. The added novelty of doing this may be entertaining for them, but the other great thing about it is that you can show off your drink collection (that has been stored properly).