Mar 31 2010
You’ve probably walked into a wine shop lately only to find an oddly-shaped, alien device on the merchandise shelf. In fact, you’ve probably seen a few incarnations: bulbous glass attachments the likes of which evoke Jerry Garcia; the ubiquitous Vinturi; UFO-looking doohickeys that purport to make your vino that much more delicious. Do they work? Are they worth the price?While the latter question is ultimately up to you to answer, the former is easy: Astonishingly, yes, these aerators (as they are formally called) do in fact work.
Recently, we at Just Grapes ran an informal experiment using two aerators we recently received (the aforementioned UFO-shaped SpinWine and the bulbous Soiree). The terms of the experiment involved the following:
A newly opened bottle (in this case, the 2007 Medalla Real Cabernet Sauvignon). Newly opened so the wine would not naturally aerate and open up; Medalla Real because it’s been our experience that straight from the bottle, this delicious cab proves to be a little tight, therefore a perfect candidate to aerate using “technology.”
In three glasses (clearly marked), we poured sans aerator, with the SpinWine and with the Soiree. Between the first two pours, there was a noticeable difference. It seems the SpinWine’s double-helix swirl introduced enough air to create a more pronounced fruit profile; the non-aerated wine was characteristically tight, with a greener palate.
With the surprisingly simplistic Soiree (it’s just a glass bulb thingy you attach to the bottle!), the Medalla Real was an entirely different beast: soft, smooth, rich, with an incredible finish. Clearly, this is what the winemakers wanted. The Soiree just moved the process along.
You may still be skeptical. That’s fair: this informal test was conducted by an oeno-geek neophyte, after all. But know that these impressions are legit. We don’t fool around here at JG.