Testing wine aerators.
Want your favorite bottle of wine to taste as good as it possibly can? Then you need a wine aerator to keep beside your wine collection. An aerator adds oxygen to the wine as you pour it, which reduces the bitter flavor of the wine's tannins for a smoother taste.
But if you want to enjoy your wine to the fullest, you have to choose the right wine aerator. That means selecting the best type, material, size, and other features to suit your preferences. Our guide has all the information you need to find the best wine aerator, including our picks for the top three products on the market.
Considerations when choosing wine aerators
Types of wine aerators
There are several different types of wine aerators to choose from.
A handheld wine aerator is a device that you hold over your glass and pour wine through. It lets a great deal of oxygen into the wine quickly, but it can be somewhat bulky and is usually a better option if you only drink wine occasionally.
A stopper or in-bottle wine aerator is a device that fits directly into the neck of a wine bottle, so it can both aerate the wine and serve as a stopper. When you pour the wine, it passes through the aerator to introduce the oxygen. A stopper aerator doesn't add as much air to wine as other types of aerators, though.
A decanter or in-glass wine aerator allows you to decant and aerate your wine at the same time. You add the wine to the top of the decanter, and then it passes through the aerator to add oxygen. There's usually some type of spout at the bottom that allows you to easily pour the wine into a glass for drinking.
An electric wine aerator is usually the most effective type of aerator, but it costs more, too. You place the aerator at the opening of the bottle and press a button to filter the wine through the aerator and then pass it into your glass. An electric wine aerator is quick and easy to use, so it's ideal if you drink wine often.
Wine aerators are usually made of plastic, glass, or steel. None of these materials add any aftertaste to your wine, but some are more durable than others. Plastic and steel are typically the heartiest, while glass is extremely fragile.
Wine aerators aren't particularly large appliances, but some are bulkier than others. If you plan to leave your aerator on your bar cart, size probably doesn't matter. However, if you're going to store it in a drawer, you may want a more compact option.
A stopper or in-bottle model is usually the smallest type of aerator, so it's an ideal choice if you don't have much room to store your aerator.
Ease of use
If you want to aerate your wine as easily as possible, an electric aerator is your best bet because you simply press a button to successfully add oxygen to your wine. A stopper or in-bottle aerator is also extremely simple to use because you only have to pour the wine into your glass as you normally would.
Because they can have many nooks and crannies, you want to choose a wine aerator that's easy to clean. Some models are dishwasher-safe, which offers the easiest clean-up. Models that must be hand-washed often include a brush to help remove any residue.
Some wine aerators come with a set of accessories to help you enjoy your wine. You can find aerators that include a corkscrew, foil cutter, and stopper if you need to round out your bar cart tools.
Wine aerators generally range from $10 to $100. You can usually find a quality aerator for about $15 to $45, but an electric wine aerator usually falls in the $50 to $100 range.
Q. What types of wine should be aerated?
A. Younger red wines are usually highly tannic and can taste bitter, so they benefit from aeration. Older reds that contain sediment usually taste better when aerated, too. Some white wines, including sauvignon blanc, riesling, chablis, and muscadelle, can also taste better if aerated, as can a dessert wine like port.
Q. What's the best type of wine aerator if I want to aerate an entire bottle at once?
A. Most wine aerators aerate a single glass at a time, so if you want to aerate a bottle, you should opt for a decanter wine aerator.
Wine aerators we recommend
Best of the best: Aervana MV6-1 Original One-Touch Luxury Wine Aerator
Our take: An expensive wine aerator, but it provides the best-tasting wine according to owners.
What we like: This electric aerator works quickly and easily and gives wine a smooth, mellow flavor.
What we dislike: It doesn't work well with larger wine bottles.
Best bang for your buck: Baen Sendi Wine Aerator Pourer
Our take: Not necessarily the most durable option, but this wine aerator provides excellent-tasting wine at an affordable price.
What we like: It boasts an easy-to-clean, attractive design. Wine tastes great after aeration.
What we dislike: Some owners have issues with leaks.
Choice 3: Rabbit Wine Aerator and Pourer
Our take: A favorite among wine experts for its simple design, effective performance, and affordable price tag.
What we like: This wine aerator features silicone and stainless-steel construction that holds up well and is easy to clean. It has a large bowl for more effective aeration.
What we dislike: It doesn't fit all bottles, so drips may occur. It sometimes falls out of the bottle, too.
Jennifer Blair is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. BestReviews and its newspaper partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links.
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Photo (red wine in balancing holder): Maura Friedman
Photo (pouring wine): Ramona King