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 Filed as : Wine Tools

Deciphering Aeration And Decanters

Feb 15, 2012
Deciphering Aeration And Decanters
Tips on when to open up your wine…or not

decantersYou’ve likely seen wine aerated in a restaurant and maybe you’ve done it yourself at home by splashing the wine into a decanter. But we got to thinking a refresher might be in order. Since all wine is not created equal, all wine does not need to be aerated.

We got some tips from sommeliers and the Beverage Director for Jean-Georges restaurants, Bernard Sun.

Do Aerate:
     •  Usually, red wines that are five years or younger, and young, fuller bodied whites like         Premier Cru or Grand Cru white Burgundies, can be decanted.
    •   Wines have a lifecycle of their own, and are in a sense alive. Sometimes aeration will         help them show better in a glass. The air invigorates them.

Don’t Aerate:
     •  Mature wines, both white and red, become more delicate as they age, which means         aeration would actually speed up their demise.

Sun said just about any vessel or container can be used to aerate, but that a nice decanter will add to your dining experience.

There are many decanter designs to choose from and some interesting devices that claim to aerate at different levels.

Which wines do you aerate at home? Tell us below.



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Feb 16, 2012
What do folks think of the instant aerators? My friend, who is an unabashed gadget lover, swears by his. I emotionally prefer to allow the wine to open with time, but I would like to hear opinions from the wine world on this device. Thank you.

1 out of 1 people thought this note was helpful.

Feb 16, 2012
Joycine, We know people like instant aerators...but we
at the Daily Sip prefer to watch the wine open up more
gradually. We also think that good, old-fashioned
swirling (the glass) is still the best (and least
expensive) aerator.

What is the term used to refer to the overproduction of wine in Europe?