Not many know this but the reason why wine experts swirl their glass of wine before drinking it is because they’re allowing air to mix into the wine. This makes the wine more flavorful and aromatic so that the drinking experience becomes more pleasurable.
Wine contains ethanol and sulfites. Ethanol is what makes it alcoholic and smell like medicine while sulfites, which smell like old eggs, control the microbial content. When wine is exposed to air, these compounds undergo oxidation and evaporation.
This means they break down and diffuse into the air, allowing the wine’s full flavor and aroma to come out. Aerating your wine for at least thirty minutes will allow you to taste the wine’s full character when you finally drink it.
But too much air exposure isn’t good for wines either. It will make new wines go stale or flatten the complex flavor of vintage ones. And this is where a wine aerator comes in.
A wine aerator controls the aeration process by funneling the wine into a chamber that’s filled with oxygen to evaporate. Wine aerators are basically practical applications of the Bernoulli Effect which states that the faster a liquid flows, the more its pressure decreases. When wine is poured through an aerator, the pressure difference inside forces the air to mix with the wine, hence improving its flavor and aroma.
It’s a quick way of aerating your wine so you don’t have to wait for thirty minutes to an hour in order for wine to fully breathe. It’s also convenient because you can just aerate a glass instead of a full bottle so you don’t have to consume perfectly good wine in just one sitting.
If you’re getting a wine aerator, you’re going to be using it for red wines more than white ones. This makes it an ideal choice if you're part of a red wine of the month club. Young red wines that have high tannin content because they weren’t aged long and vintage red wines that are so old that the tannin content has solidified into sediments on its bottom will benefit more from aeration. Similarly, full bodied whites like a Bordeaux or a Burgundy will also improve from it.
Because the device is so small, aerators make popular gift items for wine lovers for any occasion. There are two types in the market today: the handheld wine aerator and the wine pourer aerator.
A handheld aerator is a small tool that’s held or placed on top of a wine glass. You pour wine into it slowly to prevent overflows. Some brands provide a stand and a base for it to make it easy for you to use.
A wine pourer, meanwhile, looks like a bottle stopper that is fitted into an open wine bottle. When wine is poured, it runs through the aerator and into the glass. Some brands make it even more convenient by producing battery-operated models. Just press a button and it will immediately pump wine out of the bottle, aerate it and pour it into the waiting glass.
Basically, a good aerator is one of the simplest and affordable way to get the most flavor out of any wine. Even the cheapest ones. Here are my top picks for the best wine aerators in the market.
The Best Wine Aerators
- Vintorio Wine Aerator Pourer
- TenTen Labs Wine Aerator Pourer
- Vinturi Deluxe Essential Red Pourer and Decanter Tower Stand Set
- NutriChef Electric Aerator Dispenser Pump
- Soireehome – In Bottle Wine Aerator
1. Vintorio Wine Aerator Pourer
This pourer’s airtube is designed to enhance the Bernoulli effect. It has three airholes that draw in oxygen and a flow regulator plate to spread out the wine to maximize air exposure inside its large aeration chamber.
The notched pour spout is made from high quality acrylic while its rubber stopper is tapered and ribbed to eliminate leaks. This aerator isn’t dishwasher friendly but it can be disassembled easily for cleaning under running water.
This product comes with a lifetime warranty.
- Good after-sales service
- Lifetime guarantee
- Requires careful reassembly
- Easily breaks apart if it is accidentally dropped
2. TenTen Labs Wine Aerator Pourer
The manufacturer is marketing this as the ideal wine aerator pourer for sub-$20 wines. It has a wide mouth for steady pouring and a compact air hole for controlled aeration in its chamber.
The spout is tapered so there is no dripping and it's made from sturdy plastic. It also comes with a silicon plug to create a leak-free seal.
This pourer can be cleaned easily with running water in just under 10 seconds. This product also comes with a lifetime warranty.
- Two-in-one package
- Lip design prevents the wine from dripping
- Not to be used as a stopper
- Some users have commented that it pours wine very slowly
3. Vinturi Deluxe Essential Red Pourer and Decanter Tower Stand Set
This is a handheld aerator that comes with its own tower for easy use in aerating a glass or a bottle of wine. Simply place the wine glass under its tower set and pour wine through the aerator.
The aerator is made from acrylic with a silicone body that makes it easy to grip. Its curved tower comes with a no-splash grate and is easy to disassemble for cleaning in a dishwasher. There’s also a no-drip stand to display the device and a filter screen to protect the wine from cork bits and sediment.
- Comes with a stylish stand for convenient pouring
- Easy to use and clean
- Some users commented that using the stand makes pouring the wine messy
- Spout is small making it hard to pour wine
4. NutriChef Electric Aerator Dispenser Pump
This battery-powered aerator pump makes it easy to aerate and pour wine into glasses. Simply place the pump on the mouth of the bottle to make a tight seal. Press and hold the button on its top to activate the pump to diffuse air into the wine and pour it into the glass.
This pump fits all standard sized wine bottles. It has a metal spout that’s designed to eliminate splashes and comes with a hard and a soft straw with plenty of extra length to reach the bottom of both smaller and larger wine bottles.
The pump requires a set of 4 AA batteries and includes a soft fabric bag to protect its metal finish from scratching.
- Doesn’t spill when pumping wine into a glass
- Only fits the mouth of a standard-sized wine bottle
- The suction stem is too short for a 3-liter bottle
5. Soireehome – In Bottle Wine Aerator
This uniquely designed wine aerator is handblown from borosilicate glass. It’s five times thicker than wine glass and is dishwasher safe.
It’s equipped with a five-ring silicone gasket that fits any cork or screwcap bottle. It comes with a stand that also functions as a drying rack. It’s easy to use and clean.
Good for all styles of red and white wines.
- Made with borosilicate glass
- Silicon gasket fits most standard-sized wine bottles
- The storage base for the stopper isn’t durable
- Not dishwasher safe
Buyers Guide to Picking the Best Wine Aerator
Handheld or Pourer
Both are small, portable, and easy to store. A handheld, however, might be a bit inconvenient for those with hand coordination problems because you have to handle both the aerator and the wine bottle at the same time. To get around this, you can get a model that comes with a stand and a base so that you can just place the aerator and wine glass on it.
The nice thing about pourers though, is that they're less messy to use. Just place the pourer on the bottle’s mouth and pour wine from it. To get the best one, pick a product that can also be used as a stopper.
Ease of Use
Wine afficionados can be quirky drinkers. Some like doing the ritual of aerating wine so they prefer manual wine aerators.
But if you want to get to sipping your wine quickly, a battery operated model would be more suited for you.
Check the quality of the material used. Most aerators are made from tough, food-grade plastic. Look for a BPA-free label if you’re going with plastic. Check its construction too. Those made from cheap plastic can break apart after a few uses.
Occasionally you might find a pourer that uses glass. Make sure that it’s made from borosilicate. It’s more durable and shock-resistant than regular glass.
Look for additional features that you will be able to use. For instance, if the wine pourer can also be used as a stopper, then that’s a better choice than a basic model.
An aerator stand, meanwhile, can be more than just a practical feature. It can also be a stylish one. Some stand models are designed so that they can be displayed in a bar.
For ease of cleaning, you may also opt for those that are dishwasher safe.
A good wine aerator is something that can serve for at least two years so look for that in their warranty. Some products will offer a lifetime warranty and while this makes the product appealing, look for proof on its product page that it fulfills its warranties.
Check the comments on its after-sales service. If they’re quick to respond to inquiries and requests for replacements, then the brand is reliable enough for your consideration.