Sometimes, when you open a good bottle of wine and pour it into your glass, it just doesn’t taste as good as you imagined. Either the wine smells too ‘tight’ or its tannins make your mouth feel dry and dissatisfied. 

Or, even worse, you’re drinking a special bottle of vintage wine and you notice dry, chalky, and bitter particles in your wine that stain your tongue and coat your tastebuds. 

That’s where decanters come in. They help wine open up and let you remove these pesky ‘sediments’ before they get into your glass. 

With all their special uses, decanters make a stylish and practical edition to any wine drinker’s collection. No matter if you’re buying a decanter for a loved one, a coworker, friend, or yourself, there’s plenty of amazing choices on the market. 

Below is our guide to purchasing the best decanter as a gift or for special occasions. Read on to learn more about decanters, their prices, and the best styles and shapes for you and your wine. 

decanting wine like a sommelier

Top Decanters and Their Prices

Decanters come in a variety of price points, from $20 budget decanters to luxurious specialties. No matter what you want to spend or the type of wine you or the receiver likes to drink, you’ll find something perfect. 

Below are our recommended decanters and their average prices. You can find them online, at retail stores, or at your favorite local wine shop. 

Pura Decanting System by Rabbit ($70 to $75)

The Seattle brand Rabbit’s original array of wine and barware doesn’t stop at corkscrews. Their Pura Decanting System features a stainless steel strainer to catch sediment. This makes it the perfect decanter if you or the person you’re gifting has a beautiful library vintage to enjoy. 

The decanter’s filter fits snugly in place while pouring while the aerator channels wine down the decanter’s side. This will give your wine instant aeration, perfect for the heaviest and most tannic red wines. 

The decanter has a wide basin and a narrow neck design that’s both functional and elegant. 

Le Château Wine Decanter ($42 – $70)

Crafted by Le Chateau, this beautiful decanter is hand-blown from lead-free crystal. Its angled spout, long neck, and wide base, is perfect for aerating the boldest wines on the market or your favorite library wines. 

Its lightweight and sturdy design makes it easy to pour. Plus, its ample base stops sediment from reaching your glass, while the sturdy neck and slanted spout stop messy drips. 

This lightweight decanter perfectly holds a standard 750-milliliter bottle, filling it to the widest part of its base. 

Although its durable design makes it dishwasher safe, we recommend hand washing your decanter for optimal care. Its design makes it easy to clean, especially when using cleaning beads. 

Josephinenhütte Josephine Decanter ($150 – $210)

If you want to give an extra special wine gift to someone special, this decanter will do the trick. Josephinenhütte is famous for crafting some of the most elegant stemware and decanters on the market today and their latest decanter is one of the best. 

This brilliant decanter epitomizes the brand’s exquisite craftsmanship. Made from thin and durable glass, this handmade decanter is minimalist and elegant. 

Its spaceship-like bottom contours and bowl let you get the most aeration possible. Even though it’s on the pricier end, its sturdy and durable design makes it perfect for everyday use, making it one of our top choices. 

Ichendorf Milano Decanter ($70 – $110)

Founded in Germany over 100 years ago and now crafted in Italy, Ichendorf Milano is one of Europe’s most trusted home and kitchenware design studios. 

The Alchemy Decanter has a beautiful colored glass design that’s both sturdy and easy to use.  Beyond its stunning two-toned design, this decanter excels in enhancing wine aeration.

The company has several other decanters in various shapes. If you’re looking for a decanter that’s functional, elegant, and sturdy, this one is hard to beat. 

RBT Wine Decanter with Wooden Coaster ($48 – $110)

The RBT Wine Decanter is made out of sturdy borosilicate glass and comes with an elegant wooden coaster. This decanter is another excellent product from the popular Rabbit brand. 

It comes with a functional aerator attached to its neck, which speeds up the aeration process. Its base is 8” wide and can hold a standard bottle of wine. 

Inside its aerator is a built-in strainer to help you remove any sediments easily. With its affordable price, functionality, and style, the RBT Wine Decanter makes for the perfect gift or addition to a home wine set. 

Vintorio GoodGlassware Wine Decanter ($20 – $27)

If you’re looking for the best budget decanter that can do the job efficiently and elegantly, then Vintorio GoodGlassware’s decanter is perfect. 

This decanter has a classic wide-base design, making it ideal for aerating the boldest wines. It’s also dishwasher-safe and break-resistant, making it perfect for everyday use. When you hold the decanter, you’ll notice an easy to grip indent at the bottom, giving you an easier pouring experience. 

The decanter measures 6.5 inches at its widest point and is capable of holding 44 ounces of wine. It’s also made from recycled glass that’s completely lead-free. 

All About Decanters

A decanter is a hollow container typically crafted from glass or crystal. Decanters have a wide bowl and a slender neck, but sometimes they come in irregular shapes like animals and something out of a sci-fi movie. 

Beyond their presentation, decanters have a few practical functions. The first function is separating sediments that some old red wines collect after aging for a long time. 

red wine carafe glasses arrangement

A decanter lets you pour your wine out while letting the sediments accumulate at the bottleneck. This makes them easy to remove, leaving you with clean and sediment-free wine in your decanter. 

The second function of a decanter is exposing your wine to air. This is a process called aeration. Wines high in tannin benefit from greater aeration, and decanters with a larger base are perfect for even the most intense, mouth puckering reds. 

Select the Right Decanter for you and Your Wine

Everyone has their own preference when it comes to wine. From dark reds to light bubbles, we all gravitate towards a certain type of wine over others. 

Available in diverse shapes and sizes, decanters cater to all wine types and preferences. Standard decanters, with their narrow neck and wide base, are well-suited for most robust red wines, such as cabernet sauvignon, syrah, and bold red blends.

low angle red wine carafe

Lighter-bodied reds and white wines need less aeration and benefit from decanters with more modest bases. Aged wines need minimal aeration compared to their younger counterparts, and for them, the simplest decanter is the most effective.

Also, keep in mind that even though a decanter looks beautiful, it may not be as practical as a simple-looking glass version. While elegant decanters that look like beautiful stained glass may be visually appealing, you may not see what you’re decanting through all the embellishments. 

When gifting a decanter, it’s often the more practical one that’s the best. However, if you or the person you’re gifting the decanter to loves beautiful crystal or quirky designs, then by all means any decanter will do the trick. 

Things to Look for While Choosing the Perfect Decanter

To choose the perfect decanter for you or the person you’re gifting, there are a few things to look out for. Below are a few things to consider that will help you make the right choice. 

Price

Decanters come in many prices and it’s no surprise that some of them can be quite expensive. You should never feel like you have to buy something above your price point. 

Many decanters run under $40 and offer the same decanting abilities as those with the extra bells and whistles. Although spending more will often get you higher quality, sleeker designs, and more tools for aerating and sediment removal. 

Form 

Decanters come in many shapes and sizes and some designs are more functional than others. When choosing a decanter, look for one that can aerate and pour your wine, all while looking stylish. 

A decanter’s key role is to expose your wine to air and remove the sediment that forms in many older red wines. Make sure to choose a decanter that has a wide and shallow bowl with plenty of surface area. On top of that, look for a neck that’s easy to pour from and sturdy, so you don’t have to worry about breaking it. 

What’s it Made From? 

Make sure you buy a decanter that’s made out of glass or transparent crystal so you can easily see the wine inside. Crystal is generally more expensive and oftentimes just as effective as glass decanters. 

You should avoid decanters made from other materials. In terms of not imparting any extra flavor on your wine, nothing beats glass or clear crystal.  

Size and Volume

Most decanters can hold one standard bottle of wine or a larger magnum-sized bottle. If you typically decant standard bottles, all you need is a standard size. 

You want to look for a bottle that has plenty of surface area to hold your wine and expose it to as much air as possible. However, there’s no reason to buy a size that’s bigger than what you need to decant. 

Looking for a gift for a special occasion like Valentine’s Day? A beautifully crafted Valentines wine decanter can add an elegant touch to the celebration. Cheers to love and good wine!

Why Decanters Help Some Wine Taste Better

When you drink wine, you’re taking in aromas, tastes, and colors that stimulate three senses all at the same time. If you count the sound of it swirling around your glass or pouring out of your decanter, that’s four! 

glass wine decanter served table

Decanting wine lets the compounds that make it taste and smell so unique come to the surface. It also lets less delicious compounds evaporate before they even hit your mouth. 

This process works by exposing your wine to the air, a process called aeration. This lets the harsher compounds evaporate and leaves the nicer and more subtle aromas behind. 

When you decant your wine properly and for the correct time, two things happen. First, some of the wine’s harsher volatile compounds evaporate, leaving the better tasting and smelling compounds behind. 

The next process is oxidation. This is when oxygen in the air interacts with all the gasses and compounds in the wine, leading to slight chemical changes that will ruin the flavor of the wine over time.