During one of my wine tasting event, I was asked by one of my wine members of this one peculiar question which caught my attention. As a matter of fact this question had been asked a few times by many other wine members which I felt people don’t really know the difference.
This is because aerating doesn’t necessarily have to happen via decanting and wine drinkers don’t necessarily decant in order to aerate. Confused right?
To me, there are a few factors to consider on whether to use a decanter or an aerator
- The type of wines
Wines that benefit from aeration or decanting includes young tannic wines such as cabernet sauvignon, shiraz and zinfandel. Doing either decanting or aerating will open up the wines when oxygen is able to mix with the wines as this soften and smooth out the flavour of the wines. Using a handheld aerator such as Magic Wine Aerator or Magic Wine Decanter is ideal to get the job done.
Wines that are above 15 years old will generally have natural occurred sediments and decanting the wines is a way to remove the sediments. Hence, a decanter is more appropriate to be use for older wines. It is also found that aeration is a harsh way to aerate wines which at some point, it is not suitable for delicate and old wines. In addition, go for a 1.5 L decanter like the MITRE 1.5 L decanter with 20.5 cm diameter which optimized the air to wine ratio
- The intended group/ guest
During my many wine tasting event, there are wine tasting groups with patience and there are those who are excited to get their hands on the wines asap. Hence, for when I have the luxury of time, I would usually uses the decanter while during “exciting” time, I would opt to just use the aerator. While, there are groups where they appreciate the usage of decanter not only that is make the wines taste delicious but it certainly looks pretty and classy when presented.
- Cleaning and Mobility
Let’s face it, cleaning decanter can get tedious hence I’m not a big fan of cleaning the decanter as opposed to cleaning the aerator. Decanter need time to be dried but aerator can be easily clean and dried super-fast. For mobility and ease of storage, my preference is definitely to go for an aerator and the LOVIN Mini Red Wine Aerator is small enough to fit into your pocket!
- The ease of use
I find both aerator and decanter easy to use as both rely on the same principle and all you need to do is just to pour wine into or through it.
Like wines, it is boil down to individual preference on whether to use a decanter or an aerator. My recommendation would certainly be to have both so whether you are dealing with young or vintage wines, you are well prepared.