To decant or to put in carafe? 

 

There are people are for, others people cons. And for people for, it is only in specific case. But what is “decanted wine”? What is difference between to decant and to put in carafe?

To decant: Definition & goals  

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Le Petit Larousse (French dictionary) give this definition: “To transfer slowly liquid that has made sediment”. So in restaurant industry, to decant wine is in order to separate wine with its sediment. But actual wines haven’t sediments or a bit.  Thanks to technical progress into winemaking process, now we have much less sediment compare to wines made before.

Is it still interesting to decant a wine ? Without ceremonial aspect, to decant a wine today is still interesting in order to separate sediment (even if we have less sediments today, some can still have a bit), but also to proceed a little and slowly aeration. We have to be careful to older wines, the balanced is really delicate and so a brutal contact with air can destroy it in few seconds.

How to proceed?

Some Bordeaux, Madiran or Porto with few years bottled, some sediments and when it is closed permit to be decanted. You have to use a decanter (see picture). Like we said, you have to transfer wine slowly in this decanter, in order to sediment stay in the bottle and to do a little aeration, not too brutal. You can let a bit liquid into the bottle in order to don’t have this sediment into carafe.  

To put in carafe: Definition & goals

Contrary to decanted wines, generally used for old wines, we use carafe for young wines, or in others words, for wines are not really ready to drink. So in this case, transfer wines in carafe is quicker than to decant, goal is to air it. Some wines need to be in contact with air to be opened. If you don’t have time to open wines few hours before to drink it, you can use this process.

How to proceed?

For wines no ready to drink, closed, generally too young, you have to use carafe (see picture). Open the bottle and transfer liquid into carafe quicker. Some wines can have little bubbles, generally natural wines. In this case you can also use this process in order to destroy this bubbles. Bubbles into a wine are not fault. In order to doesn’t use sulfite, natural winemaker prefer to let gas into the wine for a better preservation.

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