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Not only does a wine decanter make for an elegant addition to your dining table, it also helps your wine release exciting new aromas and tastes. If you’re in the market for a wine or whiskey decanter, don’t just go for the most appealing design. Instead, keep an eye out for these key qualities.

Why should I use a wine decanter?

For as long as people have enjoyed wine they have also served it in decanters. Not only do decanters provide an elegant way to serve wine, they also help aerate it. Aeration exposes your wine to oxygen, which allows it to “open up” and release even more complex tastes and aromas. Additionally, decanters separate the sediment from the liquid. This keeps you from accidentally serving up a glass full of off-putting sediments and instead leaves you with smooth, delicious wine.

Why should my decanter set be transparent?

A transparent wine decanter allows you to easily see sediment while you pour. If you do see sediment in the wine as it pours, this is a good indicator to stop pouring.

What size and shape of decanter is best?

At the very least, your new wine decanter should be able to hold 740 milliliters, which is the size of a standard bottle of wine. You don’t want anything much larger than this, as decanters quickly lose their sophisticated appeal when wine is sloshing around.

The shape of your wine or whiskey decanter is also important. To allow your beverage to properly breathe, you should look for a design with a wide neck and even wider body. Beware of designs that are too wide, however. Too much exposure to air will kick start the process of souring.

What material is best for my wine or whiskey decanter?

You’ll typically have a choice between glass or crystal decanters. Not many differences can be found between the two, however a crystal decanter may feature more intricate details. Glass styles, however, can be formed into delicate, awe-inspiring shapes.