Many an aficionado will declare that drinkers must let wine breathe first to enjoy a bottle at its best. Picture: AP
Many an aficionado will declare that drinkers must let wine breathe first to enjoy a bottle at its best. Picture: AP

Let the wine breathe? What a load of plonk!

By Daily Mail and lifestyle reporter Time of article published May 4, 2020

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London - Many an aficionado will declare that drinkers must let wine breathe first to enjoy a bottle at its best.

But millions simply pick up a bottle at the supermarket, take it home and enjoy a glass without delay.

And they have now been backed by professional tasters and Masters of Wine who agree that leaving a bottle open will do little to improve the taste. Wine taster Martin Isark said letting the alcohol breathe was "bunkum" and out-of-date.

He added: "Most wines produced today are palate friendly and ready to drink.

"A beautifully shaped glass is the answer to rewarding the palate, not opening the bottle two hours before you’re ready to drink it. The only exception may be rare vintages."

Another specialist, Michael Palij, told The Sun: “If a wine needs to breathe then it is too young - it needs contact with oxygen to hasten the ageing process.

“Opening the bottle alone will do little to achieve this as the contact patch between wine and air in the bottle’s neck is tiny.”

Giles MacDonogh, an expert and author on wine tasting, added: "Old wines are often only at their best for an hour or two. It would be a crying shame to miss that by decanting too early."

Traditional winemaking kept bottles in cellars for years or even decades, allowing sediment to build up which was removed by decanting. This was coupled with the view that exposing wine to oxygen allows it to evolve and "age".

But modern winemaking leaves little or no sediment, meaning the liquid is ready to drink. Plus opening a bottle exposes so little of the liquid to the air that it makes hardly any difference, add experts.

Daily Mail

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