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Have you used a wine aerator?
I don't drink wine. 12%  12%  [ 2 ]
Never. 53%  53%  [ 9 ]
Used one once, and threw it away. 12%  12%  [ 2 ]
I use one for really old/tannic wines. 12%  12%  [ 2 ]
I use mine all the time; don't you? 12%  12%  [ 2 ]
Total votes : 17
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 Post subject: What's up with the aerators?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 2:16 pm 
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Location: Portland, OR
One thing which I've seen in every single holiday catalog I've recieved this year (including ThinkGeek) is wine aerators. The Surly Tab catalog offers four different models. And I'm asking: WTF?

Certainly I can see wanting one of these as a space-saving alternative to a decanter for 10-year-old wines. However, even a wino like me drinks 1-2 year-old wines 95% of the time and for those, aeration is a matter of "swirl glass, wait 10 minutes". Also, a decanter is prettier, and doesn't sound like a fart when you use it (Vinturi).

So, I can see a few possibilities:
  1. I'm missing something entirely and could be enhancing my wine experience with more aeration (not likely).
  2. Some people can't wait even 10 minutes.
  3. Hyper-aeration makes crap wine taste less bad.
  4. Nobody actually wants these; they are given as gifts because "you like wine, right?" (this is how I got mine)
  5. By using an aerator, pretentious gits can pretend that they're drinking 7-year-old Brunello instead of 2011 E&J Reserve.

I'm thinking it's probably mostly a combination of D and E.

What do you think? Oh, and survey: have you used a wine aerator?

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 Post subject: Re: What's up with the aerators?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 2:26 pm 
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We do have one. I guess it works. My husband wants a decanter though. Mainly because he thinks it looks cool. Easy Christmas/Hanuka gift this year. That plus some of the wine we had in Tuscany.

Mary


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 Post subject: Re: What's up with the aerators?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 2:32 pm 
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Location: Springfield, IL
Fuzzy,

Yes and it was not as effective as a blender. The best option is probably that fish tank bubbler that you use to oxygenate your wort, when brewing.

It's really part of the SHOW!!! when you open your too young chateau neuf do poop.

Seriously, there was a tasting using blender aerated wine with the wine losing harshness in the young tannins. (Much like a frappucino losing the acidity/bitter notes.) By the next morning, the wine had returned to normal.

Sadly, most of the aerators probably also cover up the leather/spice/citrus esters and it's really frustrating not being able to distinguish between the corinthian-goat skin, coriander-chervil and qumquat-tangelo flavor notes.

It is equally sad that it doesn't turn Thunderbird into
Echezeaux. For that, you need a Brita filter.

CC


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 Post subject: Re: What's up with the aerators?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 2:33 pm 
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Location: Denver
I have one and use it and have given many as gifts....guess I am pretentious, oh well!
Ilene

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 Post subject: Re: What's up with the aerators?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 4:38 pm 
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Ilene,

Why do you use it? What wines does it help?

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 Post subject: Re: What's up with the aerators?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 5:02 pm 
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Fuz
I will decant an expensive wine, like a Barolla, but generally I buy inexpensive reds mostly in the $7-10 range and they just seem to "open up" when I use the aerator, particularly if they are young. Somehow, they taste "rounder" to me without the harsh edge of a cheap young table red....I think the tannin is mellowed and I prefer mellow.
Obvioulsy, I never use it for a white or nice dry rose or any really good wine, or anything I have the time to decant.
I did see a wine show (something from Wine Country) where they actually aerated as they poured it into the decanter, in that case, it would only save time of allowing it to breath on its own.
Granted, all of this may be in my head, but I do like what it does to a cheap wine.
Ilene

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 Post subject: Re: What's up with the aerators?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 5:47 pm 
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Ilene,

Well, gods know I have plenty of cheap wine around. Time for a taste-test when I get back from Boston.

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 Post subject: Re: What's up with the aerators?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 11:09 pm 
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Look forward to your report Fuzzy
Ilene

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 Post subject: Re: What's up with the aerators?
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 11:09 am 
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Location: Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
Okay, let’s start with some basic taste tests:

Do you eat your cheese cold or do you insist on letting it reach room temperature?
Does your stew taste better the next day or you don’t care?
Does your bread taste better fresh out of the oven or cold the next day?
Do you season your meats at least 20 minutes (or longer) before cooking or you don’t think it matters?

Frankly, if you don’t care or if you can’t taste the difference, it really is a waste of your time to aerate your wine. It’s irrelevant if sommeliers do this, or professional wine tastings do this or anything else.

However, I have yet to find anyone that can’t taste the difference between the following 2 samples. Open a bottle of any wine (red, white, sparkling, boxed…), pour 3 ounces into a glass (shape of glass of your choosing, shape being a whole other discussion point), vigorously pour the rest of the bottle into a container (thereby aerating it…) that doesn’t have a lingering odor (i.e., not a coffee pot or lady’s slipper) and then pour another 3 ounces into a same shaped glass. Smell and taste. Which one do you prefer?

You now have your answer.

If you would like an explanation
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aroma_of_wine

And since I know you are just dying to know, yes, I aerate all of my wines except Champagne (and some of the major Champgane house are promoting even this). In fact, I double aerate all of my wines in that I pour all of them into a cheap decanter and then immediately pour them back into the original bottle using a large, plastic funnel so that the wine being served is easily identifiable. Doing this also allows me to note whether there is sediment, which I, thus, eliminate.

I have tried aerating Champagne but it loses too many bubbles for my taste standards.

And there we are back to where we started. Can you taste the difference? But if you don't try these things and just dismiss the practices of others - how will you ever know? And isn't that partly why we are on this board? ;) :D


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 Post subject: Re: What's up with the aerators?
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 12:44 pm 
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Location: Denver
Wino
:D :D :D
Ilene

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