Wine glasses and decanters
When you are drinking wine, it is important to have the right accessories in order to fully enjoy the experience. One of the elements which wine drinkers probably give the least thought about are the wine glasses. However, the choosing of a particular glass for certain types of wine can help to enhance the user’s experience, and can also help the tastes and aromas of the wine to fully circulate. While wine glasses can be important to how the served wine is drunk, wine decanters are vital for pouring the wine properly, or removing the sediment from an older wine. Whether you are sampling a classic South African wine, or trying a bottle of vintage Port, the wine glasses and decanters can be vital.
When looking for the perfect wine glass, you need to consider the type of wine that you will be drinking. Red wines are best drunk from glasses which have a wide, round bowl, which helps the wine to oxidize. A Cabernet Sauvignon, for example is best experienced in a Bordeaux glass, while the traditional Burgundy glass is best used for delicate wines such as Pinot Noir. By using a glass which is compatible with the type of wine you will be drinking, you can experience more of the flavour, aroma and body of the wine. On the other hand, a white wine glass is taller, with a more fluted shape. Chardonnay can be drunk in a glass which is similar to a Burgundy glass, while more delicate wines will prefer to have a narrower mouth, to limit the amount of oxidization which takes place before the wine is drunk. Sparkling wine also needs a small glass in order to retain the bubbles for longer. Sherry glasses, ideal for drinking spirits such as port, has a round bowl with a very long body leading to a narrow mouth, to allow the drinker to sample the deep tastes of the spirit.
Wine decanters are designed to be used at two different stages of the wine drinking process. When the bottle is first opened, the decanter is used to expose the wine to air, allowing oxidization to occur. Putting the wine into the decanter causes it to develop its full range of flavours, giving more life to the wine. Decanting is sometimes described as ‘waking up’ the wine by exposing it to the atmosphere. The wine decanter can also be very useful when you are drinking a wine which has been previously opened and then stored in a wine fridge. During this period, sediment caused by oxidization can develop in the bottle. Decanting the wine allows you to clear this away easily. It can also be useful when opening aged wines, or those which have been maturing in a cellar for a few years, as these will also form sediment which needs to be cleared before the wine can be enjoyed. Wine decanters allow you to get the best from your wines, whether the bottle has been previously opened or is completely new.