Aeration

When to caraf wine?


Carafing involves pouring a wine into a carafe after opening the bottle, to allow it to breathe or decant for a few minutes to several hours before tasting. Young and old wines are not carafed in the same way, and the length of time they spend in a carafe also varies.

When to carafe wine?

In general, a bottle should be carafed 30 minutes to several hours before tasting in order to let the wine breathe. These indications are also given because wine merchants know that you're always short of time and that it's difficult to anticipate an opening when you buy your bottle at 6pm for dinner. However, ideally, the bottle should be opened and carafed well beforehand (at least 4 hours, and even 8 hours for some bottles). Carafing time depends on wine profile, mainly its strength, structure and age. Some wines take longer to open up their aromas, while others open up in about fifteen minutes.

The ideal is to taste and breathe the wine in a glass. Carafing accelerates aeration, and therefore the risk of oxidation of your wine in the event of overexposure to oxygen. As a reminder, old wines cannot be carafed, they decant ! And not all of them!

Here are some estimates of the ideal time to carafe your wines:

Type of wine When to caraf wine?
Young red wines between 4h and 8h before tasting*.
Light red wines between 3h and 6h before tasting*.
Powerful red wines between 4h and 20h before tasting*.
White wine between 1h and 3h / up to 10 hours for certain bottles.
Rosé wine between 1h and 3h.

Type of wine Young red wines
When to caraf wine? between 4h and 8h before tasting*.

Type of wine Light red wines
When to caraf wine? between 3h and 6h before tasting*.

Type of wine Powerful red wines
When to caraf wine? between 4h and 20h before tasting*.

Type of wine White wine
When to caraf wine? between 1h and 3h / up to 10 hours for certain bottles.

Type of wine Rosé wine
When to caraf wine? between 1h and 3h.

* These estimates are not absolute values. Smell, taste and monitor your wine as soon as you open it. This will also help you avoid carafing a corked wine.

Why caraf wine?

There are many advantages:

  • accelerates aeration of wine
  • opens up the bouquet of aromas
  • improves the flexibility of tannins
  • awakens a closed wine
  • sublimates taste
  • enhances finesse
  • harmonizes wine
  • softens the attack of alcohol
If quality of tasting is the main objective of the carafing operation, this is not to be forgotten, the pleasure of placing a beautiful designer object on your table.

Decanting or carafing your wine - that's the question

In oenology, a distinction is made between carafing and decanting. These two methods require decanters with different shapes and serve different purposes. Slightly flared, decanters help separate the wine from the tannins at the bottom of the decanter, limiting aeration.

With an aerator, you no longer need to know when to caraf your wines.

A wine aerator is the perfect replacement for your carafes. It promotes more precise aeration and oxygenation for your wine, while encouraging the unexpected. With this accessory, there's no need to wait long hours to enjoy your vintage wines after opening the bottle. Thanks to the Aveine connected aerator, you can reduce the risk of oxidation by better controlling the oxygenation of your wine. Your wine will never be out of breath.

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Choose your aerator

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Aveine's advice

Decanting should be reserved for old wines, grands crus and aged vintages. Reserve carafing for (too) young wines. Even in oenology, youth is essential...

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