If looking through wine decanter reviews isn’t exactly your thing, but you still want a suggestion for an excellent piece, then the following short paragraph should provide you with just that. After doing some research on the subject of aerating wine and analyzing customer feedback for a large number of models we’ve concluded that the Mixologist World wine decanter kit will best fit the requirements one might have from such a product. Thanks to its carafe shape it offers a wide surface area for the liquid to sit in, which makes it suitable for properly aerating older, full-bodied wine in a relatively short amount of time. It’s made of thick, lead-free glass to remove any worries of the item breaking or slowly poisoning your wine if used as a container and it also comes with a couple of useful accessories. If this isn’t available for sale in your area, then the Culinaire Artisan wine decanter will make a good alternative.
A wine decanter is not just a fancy piece of glassware that we buy to impress our friends. Their fluid shapes serve a very important purpose in allowing as much contact between the wine and oxygen as possible, in a process called aeration, which serves at improving the quality of your drink by softening the more astringent tannins in its composition.
How do we use a wine decanter?
A wine decanter will make the most noticeable difference for red wines that are substantially rich in tannins, which is the stuff that gives it an abrasive texture and a slightly pungent taste. Supermarket bought cheap red wine will have its taste significantly improved by contact with air, as well as some more expensive varieties that tend to thicken with age.
For the best results, we must ensure that the wine has as much contact with air as possible, that’s why the proper way to pour it into the decanter is by letting it slide on the glass. Some manufacturers make this a little easier for us by cutting the mouth at an oblique angle, which forms a ridge to pour the wine towards from the opposite side with little risk of spilling.
What shape is best?
Exotic glassware might allow for the liquid to run thinner, but they can prove rather flimsy for regular use, especially if they aren’t made of particularly sturdy borosilicate or crystal glass. The standard carafe does a good enough job with a structural sounder form, that’s easy to handle and doesn’t have any protrusions to bump tableware into. Besides being convenient, the carafe is usually also cheaper, considering that it takes some skill to blow glass into a swan or cornet shape and most wine decanters are crafted.
There is quite a deal of variety to choose from when it comes to size as well, but the best wine decanter is usually the one that’s most fit for the variety you are serving. A general rule is that the more bodied the wine, the larger the vessel should be.
A wide base for the decanter means that the liquid inside will keep a larger surface area, which translates into faster oxidation. You could, conceivably use a medium sized piece for a thick variety such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Petit Sirah, but you should be prepared to wait 5 or 6 hours for the full effect.
Conversely, light-bodied wines will aerate faster in larger decanters, but shouldn’t be kept for hours on end at the risk of losing some of the flavors. Smaller models also come with the usual benefits associated with their size, like being easier to fit on a crowded table and to store.
What makes it practical?
Since it is unavoidable that it will collect residue, the best red wine decanter should be conceivably easy to wash. Smaller models will make this easier for you than larger ones, and some might not even require flexible brushes due to having a similar shape to a common vase.
Top Rated Wine Decanters in 2018
Large decanters usually have a wide, flat body at the end of a tall and relatively narrow neck that will require a long and flexible brush to reach. You might want to purchase a specialized cleaning tool before opting for one of these since most common brushes used for regular bottles just won’t do.
While not particularly large in the physical sense, this model from Mixologist World has the familiar shape of a decanter intended for full-bodied wine. The wide, flat base will give it a larger contact area with the oxygen in the atmosphere, for the full aroma to be released in less than one or two hours.
Of course, this process will take far less to complete for thin varieties such as Merlot, in which case you might want to empty its contents faster or use the wood cap that comes with the package to close it.
This will also allow you to store wine in this vessel, especially as it’s made out of lead-free glass that shouldn’t pose any concerns regarding toxicity for any amount of time. The walls are remarkably thick, and many of its reviewers commented that it gives them plenty of confidence when washing it. This should be an easy process given that the manufacturer was considerate enough to include a cleaning wand in the package.
A decanter also has to be aerated to remove the aroma of its previous content, which is why this model also comes with a stand, which allows for it to be placed top down. For even more convenience, the mouth on this vessel is slanted, to make it easier for the wine to be poured in and out.Buy from Amazon for ($36.93)
With an almost textbook shape that is both functional and elegant, this Culinaire decanter should be best suited for use with medium and thin-bodied wines, while properly aerating thicker varieties might take a couple of hours. But who cares? Since this vase-like decanter will be a welcome presence at any table.
Its walls are thick enough to allow for carefree use while the body itself is kept sufficiently light not to add any considerable amount of weight to the wine it carries. With 1200 ml (40.5 oz) in total volume, this should effectively store the 750 ml found in your standard wine bottle and it can hold that for a substantial amount of time without any worries of toxicity as this product is certified 100% lead-free.
Besides being visually pleasing, its shape is also easy enough to live with, since it doesn’t require any special wand to adequately clean, and thanks to its solid construction, this product is safe to use with a dishwasher.
We did manage to find a couple of comments regarding trivial manufacturing faults, like air bubbles in the glass, but this shouldn’t really be a deal breaker considering its affordable price and the vast majority of reviewing customers haven’t issued any complaints.Click to see the price on Amazon!
Culinaire Crystal Glass
At 1,800 ml in volume, this is the larger relative of the Culinaire Artisan, intended to hold the contents of two standard sized bottles for the one or two hours it will take for a full-bodied wine to properly aerate.
A large capacity is an asset in itself for this purpose, as it will keep a steady supply of decanted wine for your guests without requiring constant re-fills.
With a wide bottom section and a long neck, its shape is specifically intended to offer as much surface area to the liquid inside as possible, ensuring that you won’t have to wait long for the wine to “breathe.”
The neck ends in a slanted top that both minimizes the amount of wine lost when poured into glasses and also makes it easier to properly fill the vessel, by making the fluid “catch on” to the surface of the glass and slide.
Crystal glass (100% lead-free) was used in its making, so it should be both remarkably clear and somewhat tougher than glassware of similar weight. The walls are substantially thick, and although this adds a great deal of resilience, some customers didn’t appreciate the extra weight.Click to see the price on Amazon!