This is what people mean by letting wine breathe

Letting wine breathe sounds fancy, but it really isn’t. The technical term is ”aerating” - exposing your wine to air before you drink it.

5 minutes read

This is what people mean by letting wine breathe

A rule of thumb is that heavy red wines (especially) can benefit from being exposed to air before consumption.

This is because they often contain tannins - a component that comes from the skin of the grape.

If you’ve ever had a strong cup of tea without any milk, you might have a hunch of what tannins taste like. They are often described as grippy, dry, and bitter. When tannins in wine are exposed to air, they become milder and smoother. Be careful not to aerate old vintage wines though, as they might lose flavour.

The best way to aerate your wine is to pour it into a decanter.

The opening needs to be wide for air to enter, hence it is not enough to simply open the bottle. Once open, let it sit for around 30 min (lighter red wines, whites & rosés) to 60 min (heavier red wines). If you’re not sure of how heavy your wine is, we have it indicated in the Outpour online wine store as seen in the picture below:

So there you have it. Next time you browse through winemakers to discover heavier red wines, you know exactly what to do.

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