Robin Garr wrote:Neil, you'll get varying advice on this for sure, but personally, I decant older wines only to get the wine off the sediment, not for "breathing," and I don't recommend allowing advance breathing time for these wines. The reason being that breathing is generally needed only for wines that are <i>immature</i>.
Mark Lipton wrote:I never dreamed of this situation arising, but I'm going to vehemently disagree with you here.
Mark Lipton wrote:
I never dreamed of this situation arising, but I'm going to vehemently disagree with you here. I've frequently encountered the need for aerating older Bdx and Burgundy to allow them to open up. The problem is: a) knowing a priori whether an older wine will need that treatment and b) knowing how much time will be required for the wine to come alive. I vividly recall opening a '61 Lynch Bages in '01: initially, it was thin and acidic with no fruit or secondary aromas; 10-15 minutes after decanting, it was a totally different wine with a huge bouquet and a clear sense of the fruit on the palate. (footnote: it stayed alive for the next 3 hours, during which time it was gradually consumed)
My advice is to open the wine a few hours ahead of time and pour a small sample into a glass. Taste it. If it's fine, put the cork back in the bottle and let it sit until needed. If it tastes muted, thin or over the hill, try decanting a bit and vigorously shaking the decanter. Now try some of the aerated wine. If it tastes better, decant the remaining wine immediately and repeat the agitation. (If it doesn't taste better, let the decanted wine sit for 10-15 minutes and try it again, etc.) Once the wine tastes "like it should," pour it back into a clean bottle and replace the cork to keep it preserved for the event. It may continue to evolve when you open it back up, but that's part of the fun.
wrcstl wrote:Mark Lipton wrote: First '82 Ducru is not an old wine
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