Why You Should Aerate Wine

What does it mean to aerate wine

TL;DR If you aerate wine it tastes better

Aerating wine sounds scientific and maybe even a little scary, but don't worry, we'll walk you through the science behind aerating wine and in five minutes and you'll know your stuff.

As soon as wine comes into contact with air, we are aerating it. To aerate wine means we're adding air to wine. Adding air to wine 'speeds up' the aging process, and unlocks flavors and aromas that otherwise will only be released with a little time and lot of patience.

You can do it with any wine - red, white, and rosé too. You don't want to aerate a bubbly though, you'll knock out all the bubbles!

What ‘letting it breathe’ means

We hear this a lot when people talk about wine. 'Letting it breathe' means opening your wine and pouring it from the bottle so it can start coming into contact with air.

Wine usually sealed with a cork. Corks are used because they seal wine in the bottle but at the same time are still slightly 'porous'. This means they allow a tiny amount of air into the bottle over a long period of time. Once air mixes with the wine, something in our wine called tannins, start to break down, which helps develop that flavor profile.

Let it


Okay cool, but what are tannins

Have you ever eaten the skin of a grape and got a dry sensation in your mouth? Does that ever happen to you when you take a sip of wine? Well, that's tannins! Tannins come from the skins and seeds of grapes. When wine comes into contact with air, the tannins break down faster, which helps develop the flavor profile of wine.

There are more tannins in red wine than in white wine. Why? Because when white wine is made the skins are immediately removed from the wine right after the juice is squeezed out. With red wine, the skins are left to mix with the wine. This is where tannin in red wine comes from and also how red wine gets its color!

Another fun fact about tannins is that they tell us how much a wine can age. The more tannins (or the more you feel that dry sensation in your mouth) the longer you could age that wine.

Oxidation - taste better

Oxidation is another scary sounding term, but when you know what it is, it's not scary at all! Oxidation is the chemical reaction the happens when foods come into contact with air. Oxygen ... oxidation. The same thing happens when you cut an avocado, potato, or apple. Once they are out of their skin exposed to air, they slowly start to turn brown.

Oxidation also happens when wine comes into contact with air. Wine benefits from oxidation because it helps break down tannins and make flavors more obvious.

oxidation makes these turn brown

oxidation turns food like avocados, potatos and apples brown

Evaporation - smell better

Evaporation happens when liquid changes to a gas. When you aerate wine the evaporation process starts which helps your wine smell better. Why? When wine is sealed in the bottle some nasty odors usually get sealed along with it. These odors are completely harmless. It's a necessary part of making and preserving wine.

By aerating your wine you will identify aromas in the wine easier. You will have gotten rid of any weird odors and there will be a slightly less alcohol gas sting on the nose.


You might have heard rumors that sulfites are the thing in wine that causes that infamous next-day wine headache. It's true that aerating your wine helps to rid of sulfite, but we are not sure how much it prevents hangovers. In our experience, if it's a hangover you're worried about nothing beats two big glasses of water and a headache tablet before bed.

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