The Value Of A Crystal Wine Decanter

by Kristie Irwin

Decanters have been around for centuries. They have been made of many different materials during this time. At first glass was used and then after the fall of the Roman Empire it was earthenware, bronze, silver and gold. It was only after the Renaissance that using glass became popular again. The crystal wine decanter of today with its long neck and wide body owes its origins to the Venetians.

Decanting was very important in the past. This was because the wines contained a lot of sediment due to the aging process. In order to deal with this problem, they were decanted, leaving the sediment behind.

The action of decanting also aerated the wine. The large surface area in contact with the air in the decanter changed it, encouraging the development of the more complex aromas and softening the bite. Decanters are also perfect for showing off the color and clarity of wines.

The purpose of decanters through the years was obvious but their popularity was not just because of this. They were desired for their appearance as well. Craftsmen competed with one another to produce unique hand-blown decanters with great aesthetic appeal. They were blown and cut by hand and often engraved with interesting designs.

Lead crystal was favored for making decanters as it sparkled beautifully. With all the health warnings today about the danger of lead to our health, this has changed somewhat. Decanters today are mostly made of crystalline glass which is lead-free. Older decanters containing lead are still collected for their beauty and there are those who feel that they are still safe to use. They feel that wines are not in them for long enough for the lead to leach into them.

Today crystalline glass can be produced which is of extremely high quality and free from imperfections. Whatever shape, design or size of decanter you are looking for, you should be able to find it. You can go online to view the many products offered. You will even be able to find one in a department store if you are looking for something simple and affordable. Of course, the prices of decanters vary greatly, depending on the method and materials used for making them.

Decanters need to be spotless for the best effect. Sometimes it is difficult to remove residues, particularly if they have a long neck and a wide bottom. Using a scrubber of anything from crushed ice to coarse salt when washing helps to loosen stains from the areas which are hard to reach.

Contrary to what some people believe, decanters are easy to use. There are those who question the value of decanting, whilst others swear by it. However, there is no argument over the aesthetic benefit of using stylish decanters.

A crystal wine decanter sets off the color and clarity of wines beautifully because of its transparency. Decanters are made today in such a variety of styles that there is one to suit every taste. It can also make a perfect gift for someone who entertains frequently as it brings style to any occasion.

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