Ten days until Christmas for that hard to shop wine lover. (Or if your like me, a wee present for myself too! )
Wine aerators are popular items these days, and not uncommon to see being used in a Tasting Room. (more restaurants should consider this, although with the new Wine Soiree L/S you can bring your own!
First, aeration is generally for reds. There are some whites that improve with oxidation, but usually for most whites I recommend leaving alone, white wine is generally much more sensitive to oxidation.
The whole concept of letting wine breathe, or aerate, is simply maximizing your wine’s exposure to the surrounding air. By allowing wine exposure to air, it will often open up, the flavor profile will soften and mellow out a bit and the overall flavor characteristics should improve. This is often true in younger, and/or bigger more tannic wines.
How NOT To Aerate
The practice in my parents day was to pull the cork and leave the bottle. Aeration is about surface area exposure of liquid to air, and this method accomplishes nothing. A study I read years ago showed a bottle opened and left for 24 hours (nothing poured out) experienced minimal oxidation.
Lot of reasons; I generally only decant if I have a group of people, or I am committed to the whole bottle that night, and even then I may not, as I may not want it to aerate THAT fast. Thus enter a wine aerator, where I can do this by the glass.
What is a Wine Soirée?
It sounds like a party in your glass, and while it can be, its certainly more. Soirée fits securely into any wine bottle allowing you to pour, without dripping, directly through the Soirée. While going through the Soirée, the wine gently is exposed to air. Their website has an excellent post on the Soirée Science
Is it Hard to Use?
Open bottle, stick in Soirée, pour, upright. Seriously its about that easy, but for those of you who want proof, click here for a pictorial tutorial.
Where Can I Get One?
Lots of places. Wine Soiree is sold by many wineries, as well as specialty retail stores, and Whole Foods. A complete list is available here. You can also buy it online, for $25, OR $30 giftwrapped, ready to go, perfect!
What is the Wine Soirée L/S?
Wine Industry people travel a fair amount, as do many wine enthusiasts, and we like our wine gadgets with us. (I was given a hard time once on an American Airlines flight for having brought my own Riedel O glass on board.) The standard Wine Soirée isn’t well suited for travel.
Voila – the new L/S was introduced to enable you to take it on flights, to your local restaurant, dinner party or your friends house that buys low end young plonk Cabernet that desperately needs some aeration.
This is an awesome stocking stuffer or gift. Available only online, in limited quantities for 49.99.
Enjoy, and cheers!