Wine Decanters Are Functional And Decorative

by Shari Swanson

Wine drinking is enjoyed by people all over the world. Using wine decanters is regarded by some as pretentious. However, most wine lovers agree that using a decanter is essential to bring out the best in a wine. Of course many decanters are beautiful, giving aesthetic pleasure to wine drinkers too.

Most red wines, particularly young red wines, need to have contact with the oxygen in the air to develop their bouquet. Usually they are opened some hours before they are served. Letting the wine 'breathe' softens the harsh tannins. Simply uncorking a bottle does not let in enough air. A decanter has a much larger surface area to enable this to happen.

Aerating the wine or allowing it to 'breathe' triggers the release of the aroma. It also helps to benefit the wine by smoothing some of its harsher aspects. This is true of young red wines. However, older wines have had plenty of time to age and simply need to be decanted just before serving. In fact, too much exposure to oxygen can ruin them.

It is unpleasant to find bits of sediment in your wine. Sediment can be really bitter, spoiling the taste. If you decant slowly and carefully the sediment stays behind in the bottle and you will be spared finding it in your wine.

The best decanter is one that allows the maximum mixing of wine and oxygen. People are drawn to different ones for different reasons. A large bellied one is most functional, while a crystal one will allow you to see the wine at its best.

Wine decanters make special gifts for a wine lover. They are available in such a variety of shapes and sizes that there is one to suit all tastes. Prices vary considerably but you have a choice of many which are reasonably priced.

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