How do you drink your wine? Are you someone who immediately uncorks the bottle, splashes some into a glass and sips it right from the word go? Or do you pay attention to all that expert advice and give it time to breathe as well, making sure it is at the right temperature along the way? If you fall into the second group of people you probably know something about aerating wine, but if you are in the first group you could be in for a nice surprise.
Okay, so what is wine aeration all about?
The mystery is revealed: it is the process of introducing air into the wine. When you stop to think about it the wine will have been corked up in a bottle for some time – perhaps even years. By letting it breathe the wine will have a chance to release all of the delightful aromas and flavors that distinguish different bottles and wines from each other.
Do you have to go through this process?
No you don’t, but most people will agree that aerating wine brings out the best in every bottle. It doesn’t matter whether you have a cheap bottle of wine or a very expensive old one; the concept it to open the wine, let it breath and stretch out.
Each wine is created to taste a certain way and the process of bottling can bottle up some of that unique taste as well. Some brands of wine pride themselves in the blend (like whisky) and almost guarantee the same taste in ever bottle. Other wine makers are proud of the individuality of each vintage- every year has unique growing conditions and the winemaker has to capitalise on the grape produced. So by aerating the wine before you drink it you can experience the true taste that the winery intended for you to experience.
As you know, people have been decanting for centuries but this takes some time to complete and washing and drying a decanter is time consuming.
Most of the time, it’s good to be able to drink a glass of wine when you fancy it instead of having to wait for ages to get the best flavor out of it. This is where the aerator comes in. You simply have to position the aerator over the glass and pour the wine through it.
Sounds simple doesn’t it and it is. The design of the aerator means it is intended to get as much air into the wine as possible while it travels through the equipment and into your waiting wine glass. It is by far the fastest, easiest and most efficient way to aerate your wine, so you can get the most of all the flavors.
Okay so I’m convinced. But how does aerating wine improve the flavor?
The process is actually quite simple. The air helps the flavors in the wine to be released by softening the tannins in the wine. It would be pretty hard for the flavors to come through fully if you open a new bottle and drink a glass from it straightaway- just think the wine has been sitting inert in the bottle for months, years and maybe a decade or more.
By aerating wine you are giving it a chance to be open and tasted as the winemaker intended – with every note and flavor exactly where it should be.