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Choosing a Decanter

Last Updated Nov 28, 2011 · Written by Jaclyn Fitzgerald

If you’re fond of the odd tipple, you may be looking for ways to enhance the experience or to enjoy in style.  This is where a decanter comes into play.  Here we’ve outlined the best tips for choosing a decanter, so that you can enjoy your drinks, just like they do in the movies!

What is Decanting?

Decanting is the process of pouring the contents of a bottle of wine or a bottle of liquor into another bottle before serving.  The bottle that you pour the wine or liquor into is called a decanter.  Decanting allows the wine or liquor to breathe more freely, and this accentuates the taste, making it fuller and more developed.  Decanting also allows you to remove any sediment from your wine.

Types of Decanters

There are several types of decanters that you can choose from.  One of the most popular is a clear, crystal decanter that allows you to see the wine or liquor inside.  If you are keeping liquor in a decanter, you may wish to look for lead free crystal, as lead may leach into the liquor over time (as you are more likely to keep liquor for a few weeks in a decanter than wine, which you’ll likely drink in one sitting).  Clear glass is also an excellent choice for decanters, and it can be just as stylish as crystal, at a lower price.  It is however more fragile than crystal.

Look at the Shape of the Decanter

Once you have decided what type of decanter to get, it is just as important if not more important to look at the actual shape of the decanter.  Some decanters look beautiful but are practically impossible to get inside to clean (those with really narrow necks).  Being able to clean the decanter thoroughly is vital as you need to remove all traces of wine or liquor before adding another bottle.  You also need to look at the lip of the decanter.  A rounded lip looks beautiful but may cause the wine or liquor to drip onto the table.  A cut lip is a better choice as it will prevent drips from occurring.

Does the Decanter Have a Vacuum Seal?

Something that you might not consider but which is actually a very handy feature in a decanter is a vacuum seal.  It is especially handy when it comes to wine as it means that you don’t have to return undrunk wine to the bottle.  Simply use the vacuum seal and the wine will not spoil, allowing you the freedom to finish the wine a day or two later.

Complement Your Glasses

Finally, something that you may want to do is to choose a decanter that matches your wine or liquor glasses. Choosing a complementary decanter looks amazing and will really bring that sense of style and sophistication as well as the wow factor, when you are having a dinner party or just having friends over for drinks.
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