- Wine is one of the most complicated beverages.
- Unlike coffee or tea that tastes the same, the same wine can taste differently depending on its handling after processing.
- Whenever you open a bottle of wine, it aerates, meaning that it absorbs some oxygen and ‘breathes.’
When you drink a glass of red wine, you may feel it tastes different every time. This might be because of aeration. Whenever you open a bottle of wine, it aerates, meaning that it absorbs some oxygen and ‘breathes.’
Of course, wine is not a living thing, so the term ‘breathe’ here does not mean that it inhales and exhales in its real sense. When wine is exposed to oxygen, it undergoes chemical reactions that change its flavor and aroma.
Before you go searching online for liquor stores, it is good that you know the basics of wine aeration. When perfected and done appropriately, this simple act can bring a whole difference in the wine notes you taste.
Therefore, finding a store that understands the art and science of aeration is essential. One might wonder, but wine is bottled and opened only when you want to drink it. Yes, true, but even that opening may affect the quality of the wine.
To the untrained tongue, you may not sense the difference in wine notes, but to an expert, it makes all the difference. So why aerate wine since not all wine consumers are experts?
Why Aerate Wine?
Aerations Smoothens the Flavor of Wine
The oxygen interacts with tannins and other chemicals in wine to initiate a chemical reaction. Oxidation is vital for the maturity of the wine. Oxidation is the same process that helps fruits ripe.
Alcohol (or ethanol) is highly susceptible to aeration. So, when the wine is exposed to air, some of the alcohol reacts and releases acetaldehyde and acetic acid.
The emission of these chemicals rids wine of the pungent medicinal or vegetable smell associated with the wine’s bouquet.
Aeration also increases the process of evaporation. During aeration, ethanol, sulfites, and other unstable compounds evaporate. Winemakers add sulfites during the processing stage to prevent oxidation and the growth of microbes.
Both sulfites and alcohol are essential components in wine. However, aeration helps get rid of free-flowing molecules that did not take part in the chemical reaction.
In essence, aeration does not change the wine, but grooms it and makes it better. The speedy aeration process removes the excess sulfites and ethanal, leaving the wine free from the pungent aroma of sulfur and the medicinal flavor of the wine.
Wine can be great, but without aeration, it may lose its value. Sulfites make the wine smell like rotten eggs, and who wants to leave their mouth smelling that awful? Therefore, it is an excellent idea to let your wine breathe and release that bad odor before taking a sip.
Without aeration, the alcohol content in wine might mask the aroma of the wine. Aeration helps remove the alcohol, letting the wine have its natural smell and taste. You can look for liquor near me to get the best deals.
Red wine can benefit from aeration as this can improve flavor and aroma. A well-aerated wine should have a fruity and nutty smell and taste.
While oxidation is right for your wine, too much of it is not good. When you leave the wine to aerate for too long, it can contribute to ‘flattening’, making the wine lose its color, flavor, and aroma.
The Best Way to Aerate Wine
You do not need a special gadget to aerate your wine. There are simple techniques that you can apply at home. Just allowing your wine to settle for about 30 minutes to one hour is sufficient for aeration.
If you don’t have the patience or the time to wait, you can use an aerator. You attach the aerator to the bottle, which aerates the wine as you pour it out!
If you are not familiar with aerating wine, you can taste it before and after aeration. If you keep practicing, you will get the perfect timing for the best flavor and aroma.
Wine is one of the most complicated beverages. Unlike coffee or tea that tastes the same, the same wine can taste differently depending on its handling after processing.
A simple aeration procedure can double the cost of a glass of wine. It is a balancing act that requires both science and art, but the results are outstanding. This is why restaurants will charge extra for aerated wine.
If you have developed a taste for fine wine and can easily state those wine notes, then why not aerate your wine at home. You can just let your wine sit in a glass for a while. Just leaving the bottle open is not enough since the opening is too small for adequate aeration.