(Updated on 23 June 2020 with new information)
Wine enthusiasts know that letting a good bottle of red or white breathe before drinking it significantly changes the tasting experience. It improves mouthfeel, expands the aromatic profile, enhances flavours and smoothens the finish.
South Australia has some of the best wine in the world, and luckily, it has a wealth of aerators available too. Whether you drop by your local liquor store or go online, you’ll find a nice set of options to gift a friend or yourself with.
Let’s discover the best aerators in Australia.
How to Use an Aerator?
Not all aerators are made equal. You can check your favourite online retail store and find a wealth of options: pourers, decanters, electric pumps, and the like.
A popular item is the Vinturi wine aerator. Australia has an array of alternatives, but this is arguably one of the best. Before you head to the store, find out how it works.
Step 1: Know what type of wine to aerate
Identify the kind of wines that need aeration. There’s no need to put every single bottle through an aerator. Make sure you serve only the best for your guests and avoid skipping this step where necessary.
Step 2: Add the Vinturi sediment filter
Vinturi aerators have a filter screen. Attach it to the device before you start pouring so you can capture sediment. If your desired bottle doesn’t have any, you can skip this step.
Step 3: Hold your Vinturi over a glass
Hold the Vinturi device in one hand and your desired bottle of red or white with the other, then start pouring it into your wine glasses.
Step 4: Pour fast
Pour the bottle steadily through your Vinturi. If you hear it drawing in and infusing air with wine, that means it’s working. The device aerates it as soon as you pour.
What Is a Wine Aerator Used for?
An aerator can add air through a chamber, infusing it with the wine while it pours through a spout. Unlike decanting, there’s no need to wait a few days or hours. You can indulge in your best bottle from South Australia right away.
Enhancing the Flavour
Every bottle of wine is filled with volatile aromatic compounds. They evolve when the liquid comes into contact with oxygen. As the compounds are released, the wine’s range of smells expands. Aeration also adds character to a cheap bottle. It enhances its flavour, making it taste more expensive than it actually is. However, note that an aerator won’t make a bad bottle taste good. It only brings out the best in a good bottle.
Replicating the Wine’s Natural Aging Process
If you would rather indulge in a fresh bottle of red right away, you ought to get an aerator. While it mimics the natural aging process, it enhances the wine’s aromatic and flavour profile in a much shorter time frame.
Expanding the Aromatic Profile
Bouquet pertains to the range of scents and smells produced during the aging process. When you let wines breathe, you are producing better aromas that amplify the experience.
What is the difference between aerators and decanters?
There are two easy ways to let your wine breathe. One is by using an aerator while the other is by using a decanter. Both can effectively add oxygen to your wine; however, their main difference has to do with time.
An aerator allows your wine to breathe instantly. No need to let it sit, and no more waiting. Once attached to your bottle, it aerates the wine instantaneously as you pour it into your glass. If you want to skip the long wait and instantly enjoy a glass of wine, an aerator would be more ideal.
Using a decanter, which is a container often large enough to fit the contents of an entire bottle of wine, you will need to let your wine sit longer. Most of these decanters have narrow necks that allow for easy pouring and ergonomic designs that maximize aeration. Aside from making your wine smell and taste more vibrant, decanters can remove sediments that may have formed in the bottle.
Another important distinction between the two is their ability to remove sediment. Most aerators can’t remove grainy build-ups in your bottle of wine. Sometimes, these build-ups can even clog up your aerators, leaving you with a messy situation. This makes decanters best used on vintage wines. If you decant your wine properly, you can leave all the sediment in the bottle.
Do wine aerators really make a difference?
One of the most common misconceptions about aeration is that leaving a bottle uncorked will produce the same results as a decanter or aerator. While it can introduce a little oxygen, it only affects a small portion of the wine, closest to the neck of the bottle. You will need to use more effective methods to let your wine breathe successfully.
That’s where wine aerators come in. Letting your wine breathe before drinking it, whether using an aerator or a decanter, promotes oxidation. It also rids your wine of undesirable compounds. As a result of these processes, you can bring out the most aromatic and flavourful tones in your wine.
Which Wines Need to be Aerated?
Most wines benefit from a little oxygen—but not all.
Young, Tannic Reds
Bordeaux, Cabernet Sauvignon and Barbera are examples of young, high-tannic reds. Aerating your favourite bottle of shiraz from South Australia mellows its tannins, leaving it with a smoother finish and better taste.
Aged Red Wines
The longer you store bottles of red, the more their tannins will bind together. In aged reds, these sediments give wines a bitter taste, which isn’t quite appealing to the palette. This makes it best to use a filter when you’re aerating older reds from your stock.
Have a high-end bottle from South Australia? If it has been laying sideways all this time in your stock, let it stand upright for a few days. When you’re ready to start aerating it, use a filter.
Select White Wines
Check your stock for Burgundies, Alsace wines and white Bordeaux wines. These are a few of the white wines that benefit from a little oxygen. Before aerating your desired bottle, let it stand upright on the counter for an hour or so. You will be pleasantly surprised by the improvement after pouring it through an aerator an hour later.
If you have vintage ports in your stock, they’ve probably been sitting there for years and will be in dire need of some air. Take the bottle out of your cellar days before a special occasion. Let it stand upright for several days before aerating it.
Should you aerate cheap wine?
Aeration enhances the flavours, aromas, and finish of a myriad of wines—even a $5 bottle. By aerating your wine, you’re simply bringing out the full aromas and flavours within. This can at least elevate the taste of cheap wine and remove unsavoury compounds that might make it unpalatable. However, there’s only so much it can do. While it can make your average table wine taste better or, at the very least, tolerable, it can’t make a bad bottle taste good.
How long should you aerate red wine?
Wines change over time, depending on the amount of oxygen they have been exposed to. If you want to bring out a wine’s best possible flavour profiles, you need to let your wine breathe for a specific length of time, especially if you’re using a decanter.
There is such a thing as overaerating your wine. Corks, after all, are meant to seal the wine and protect it from oxygen. Letting it sit for too long can get rid of the natural flavours and aromas that make your wine unique and good. You can also turn wine into vinegar if you let it sit for too long. This is why you need to be very careful, especially when handling older wines. Vintage bottles are very delicate and may lose their fruity aromas much faster.
Aeration can last anywhere from half an hour to two full hours, depending on the age of your wine. If you let a bottle of young red wine under eight years old breathe on its own, it should take about an hour or two. Mature reds take less time to aerate—roughly 30 minutes. However, using aerators, it’s much faster because they speed up the process. All you have to do is pour your wine through the aerator and into your cup and you’re set.
Does white wine need to aerate?
Most white wines rarely need aeration because they don’t contain as much pigment molecules as red wines, which are responsible for the changes in flavour when oxygen is introduced. Some white wines that could use some aeration include Chardonnays, Sauvignon Blancs, and Burgundies, which often pack the same depth and complexity as your favourite reds.
Other whites that might need aeration include wines with earthy flavour profiles. However, you might want to give your wine a sip before putting it through an aerator.
Ideally, you should be using an electric aerator to let your white wines breathe. It’s a good way to enhance the flavours of wine while keeping them cool.
Does aerating wine reduce alcohol?
Like what happens to any other liquid when exposed to air, evaporation occurs when a wine is aerated. Its alcohol content evaporates at a different rate than water due to its distinct properties and various environmental factors such as temperature or airflow. However, it won’t evaporate as quickly as rubbing alcohol.
Simply put, aerating wine won’t reduce its alcohol. Although evaporation does occur, its effects won’t be enough to reduce the alcohol content in your wine. Perhaps it might take several days or weeks even to make a measurable difference. If you just let your wine sit, it might turn sour like vinegar before it becomes alcohol-free.
Does aerating wine remove sulphites?
Yes—aeration can remove sulphites in wine.
Sulphites are naturally occurring substances in grapes. All wines therefore contain sulphites, but some more than others. That’s because winemakers often add extra to aid in the wine’s ageing.
Do note that contrary to popular belief, sulphites don’t cause headaches. A growing pool of research, one of which is a 2008 study in The Journal of Headache and Pain, shows no link between sulphites and headaches. However, if you are concerned about them, you can remove sulphites by aerating your wine with a decanter.
As older red wines age, sediments tend to build-up as the colours and tannins start to bind together. Stirring the sediment won’t do good as it will only bring bitter notes and gritty textures. Although it doesn’t pose any dangers, it certainly isn’t a pleasant experience.
Best Wine Aerators and Pourers
Before we continue, just letting everyone know that as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases and I use that income to operate the blog.
This list compiles both Vinturi and alternative brands for aerators and pourers for your convenience. If you have questions and concerns, hit up customer service before adding the items you fancy to your cart.
Vinturi Essential Red Wine Aerator
Make your reds from South Australia taste impeccable with Vinturi. It aerates wine from the bottle or the glass, featuring the brand’s classic image and patented design. It comes with a filter and a no-drop stand, ideal for dinner parties and preventing wine from spilling on kitchen counters.
Measuring six inches high and two inches wide, the Vinturi wine aerator can fit any countertop and dishwater. You can easily store it in a cupboard as well. Since it’s quite popular, you might have to ask customer service for its availability just to be sure. It might also have additional delivery charges.
Vinturi Essential White Wine Aerator
Also featuring the brand’s classic look and patented design, this model is the spitting image of the Vinturi red wine aerator. It’s easy to store and great as a gift to a friend. Keep in mind though that it’s designed especially for white wines. It draws in the right amount of air as you pour the drink through its spout, giving you perfect aeration.
Ask customer service about its availability if it’s out of stock as it’s also highly sought-after. Note that Amazon might charge extra delivery fees for this unit as well.
Or you can buy the white and red wine aerators as a set.
Luxbe Wine Decanter with Aerator Pourer Lid
Made of 100% lead-free crystal, Luxbe’s decanter is chic and elegant. Its makes an excellent addition to the dinner table as it can amplify the ambience of your setup. It also makes a perfect gift for a friend. Its sleek design has a stainless-steel drip-proof spout, a silicone seal and a reverse filter to prevent the liquid from spilling out.
Once the wine is poured into the decanter, it reaches the widest diameter to maximise aeration, bringing out the wine’s aromatic profile. Note that Amazon charges extra delivery fees for this product.
New Pacific YouYah Red Wine Breather Carafe
The YouYah carafe is a hand-made, lead-free crystal aerator that can fit 1200 ml of wine. It is as functional as it is beautiful. With the YouYah Carafe, you can connect your favourite bottle of red to the decanter and pour all the liquid in.
You may even pour it back into the bottle and return it to your stock. Each purchase comes with stainless steel cleaning beads and a drying stand that make clean-up hassle-free.
Vintorio Wine Aerator Pourer
Designed to give wine the proper amount of air, Vintorio aerators have a wide chamber and air intake system. They use the Bernoulli Effect to optimize the aeration of wine. They have tapered rubber stoppers that fit various bottle sizes and serve as leak-free seals. They also feature an ergonomically slanted acrylic spout that spares your tablecloth from wine stains. The device can be assembled and disassembled easily, making Vintorio aerators easy to clean and store.
Whether for a gift for a friend or yourself, it’s one of the best aerators you can get today. Just check with customer service to confirm if Amazon might have additional import fees and delivery charges for this item.
Vinvoli Wine Aerator
Boasting superior aeration, the Vinvoli aerator can make young, fresh wines from your stock taste aged and expensive. Equipped with an ergonomically designed spout, it ensures smooth, spill-free pouring.
It only measures 15.2 x 5.1 x 5.1 cm, which makes it easy to store in your cupboard. Made with acrylic, it is an ideal gift for a friend on a special occasion.
Nutrichef Air Decanter Diffuser System with Unique Metal Pourer Spout
The Nutrichef’s image is unlike any other on this list. It might not be the prettiest, but it does everything for you. Its electric pump can fit all wine bottle sizes. All you have to do is press a button that aerates and dispenses the wine directly into your glass. The aerator is also ultraportable. You can easily attach or detach it from the bottle and store it in its special case when not in use. Its bag is lined with a soft fabric that protects it from scratches.
It doesn’t come cheap so you can watch out for a sale to get a good bargain.
Rabbit Wine Aerator Pourer
Another item worth adding to your cart, the device comes with a slim silicone insert that keeps it in place during the aeration process, ensuring smooth, drip-free pouring. It often has limited availability as it’s highly sought-after, but It can aerate wine instantly and effortlessly.
Its parts are detachable, making it easy to store in a cupboard when not in use. If you want to open a new bottle of red, you can get the parts from your stock and set it up within minutes.
Do you use a wine aerator? Let me know in the comments if you have a favourite wine aerator.