James Roscoe wrote:
I have never decanted a white, nor has the thought crossed my mind.
Never thought of decantinga white although I am sure someone may have a reason
Actually the new school sommeliers are promoting the decanting of all wines as a matter of course. There are quite a few restaurants that make a big deal of the policy now.
The rationale is that it is both a nice ceremony (and it is) and that it is good for the wine.
Even for white wines, there can be some initial funkiness when you first open a bottle. Sometimes it's just a reductive note that will blow off with decanting. Even if that's not present, the argument goes, it's good to let the wine emerge and aerate a bit too release it's aromatics.
For some of the more massive white wines, the ones designed to age and develop, decanting is a good idea anyway. Sure gets the aromatics out there "on the table", so to speak.
While I've never felt that it's absolutely necessary to decant all wines, and I certainly don't do so at my house, I'm not opposed to it either. And in a restaurant, if you're paying the extra money and you enjoy ceremony, that's a good ceremony to have.
In many of the restaurants that have the decanting policy, they do it even for wines by the glass: you get the glass, accompanied by a small carafe of wine.
Plus, with all the new decanters out there in the market, such as the light, delicate ones from Riedel, decanters look very stylish on the table.