How to enhance your red wines with Decanters.
Decanters, also called wine aerators, are earthenware wine vessels that open a channel in the neck of the bottle to let air in and out. That increases contact between the wine and oxygen inside the decanter, which makes the wine taste better. That's because oxygen triggers chemical reactions with flavours like oak or tannin that give wines their flavour.
Therefore, decanters are also called "tannin stabilisers".
So, if you're wondering how to enhance your red wines with these beautiful objects, here's how:
Store bottles on an angle covered by a cloth or dish towel, so they can breathe.
How to set up a wine decanter:
- Place your decanter on the table.
- Remove the cork from the bottle and leave the wine to breathe for 15 minutes.
- Place it upright so it can be filled with air. This will make it easier to pour into your decanter later. You also won't have wine running down your hand when you try to pour the wine into the decanter.
- Place a cloth on the table and the decanter on top of it, slightly tilted to one side.
- Pour some wine into your decanter (enough so it comes halfway up the neck).
- Place a stopper in your bottle and put it away (the less air that can get into the bottle, the better).
- Keep pouring wine into your decanter from time to time to let air in. This step is called "topping up". The more often you pour, the more oxygen there will be inside your glass. The idea is that you should never let it run dry. So, feel free to top up until there's enough for 2 glasses.
That's it! Now pour yourself a glass and enjoy its enhanced flavour.
It's best to use a decanter soon after you open the bottle, but it will still work if you wait a few hours or even a day. Just remember to pour some wine back into your decanter every now and then.
Any other tips you offer?
- If you have very old or valuable wines, don't use them in the decanter just yet. Not because there's anything wrong with doing so, but just in case the cork breaks when poured into the vessel.