You may have heard before that you should aerate your wines, especially red ones. Now, why should you aerate your wine? Air can help ‘open up’ your wine. When wine is introduced to the air it changes its structure. Basically all wines benefit from air. The introduction of oxygen can help enhance fruity flavours and soften hard palettes.
Aerating a wine can make it taste like it has been opened for 30 minutes, two hours or even more. This can be good or bad depending on the quality of the wine you are using. How can you tell if you should aerate your wine? You can pour two glasses. One straight from the bottle and the other from the aerator. You can taste both and see which you like better and this will determine what you would like to do for the rest of the bottle.
Aeration can be as simple as opening the bottle, pouring a glass and swirling it around. The introduction of air helps to release the aromas and to create a smoother taste. It must be noted that after a while, aerated wine begins to oxidize and the flavours and aromas will flatten out.
You can get even more air into the wine with a decanter or aerator. A decanter is just a funky looking vase that has a large neck to it. You leave the wine in this anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour. But, if you are in more of a hurry, a aerator is an accessory you pour the wine through to rapidly increase the introduction of air to the wine.
If you are looking to adventure more into the realm of wine you should do some experimenting. See how different wines reaction to air. Let us know what you have discovered!