Carafes are the perfect gift for any wine lover, whether you like the odd glass or are an expert wine drinker. Carafes can come in a wide range of sizes and shapes. Not only do they look good, act as a great way to showcase your favourite bottle of wine and share great wine with friends, but they can also be very beneficial to your favourite bottles of wine.
Often with red wine, you may encounter sediment at the bottle of the wine. This sediment can have a bitter unpleasant taste to it meaning that this bitterness may be tasted in the wine. By decanting a bottle of wine into a carafe, you can separate the fluid from the sediment making the wine less bitter.
Have you ever opened a bottle of wine and thought it tasted very bitter…? This can often be the experience when opening a younger bottle of wine. This is because of something called tannins. Tannins are responsible for giving red wine its bitterness. You can get rid of this bitterness by going through a process called aeration. Aeration is the process of adding air to something. Wine can benefit from this process because by adding air into the wine you will enhance the flavour of the winemaking it more balanced and smoother. This is because the air softens the tannins.
As previously mentioned, young wines are often better suited to a carafe du to the higher concentration of tannins. Next time you have a bottle of your go to wine, try using a carafe to see just how much of a difference it makes. Pour the wine into a carafe about an hour before consuming and this should be enough time for the tannins to soften and take the bitterness out of the wine. It is important to note that depending on the width of the opening to the carafe will determine how quickly the wine can aerate. Wine that can benefit from being decanted are as follows:
- Petite Sirah
Additionally, when you think of decanting a bottle of wine, it is often associated with a bottle of red wine. However, white wine can also benefit from being decanted. Aerating a white wine can result in a more harmonious flavour and smoothness, which helps reveal a wine’s deeper taste and aroma. White wines typically require less aeration time. Try aerating your white wine for no more than 30 minutes. White wines that benefit from aeration include White Bordeaux, white Burgundies, Alsatian wines, and Chardonnay. Light-bodied whites like Chablis or Riesling can also benefit greatly from aeration, and sweet wines such as Sauternes benefit as well.