Decanters for your wine or whiskey this holiday season help to elevate mere libations into occasions. More so than simply employing your good glassware -- you know, the set that matches -- a decanter brings a sense of ceremony to the holiday drink proceedings, with the elegant intersection of form and function. They can also remind us during these oft-frazzled times, that good wines, like good people, sometimes need time to breathe.
Wine decanters allow air to interact with the wine, in order to "open up" the aromas and flavors of more powerful reds, or anything with more than a few years of age. Even whites and serious bubbles can sometimes benefit from a gentle decanting.
Whiskey and spirit decanters, by contrast, are more compact and include a stopper so as to not burn off their potent power with too much air circulation. Those baubles are more about the Mad Men finesse and showmanship.
For the serious wine or whiskey drinker in your life this holiday season, or even someone who's just super geeked about neat glassware, we've rounded up 10 pieces for your decanting pleasure, organized into every day, flair and novelty selections.
A go-to decanter for someone who might actually use a decanter on a regular basis. Riedel's Cabernet style, everyday decanter gets the job done amiably without taking up excess horizontal space or drawing unnecessary attention to itself.
This carafe-style decanter is elegant enough to show off with a little but still compact and priced accordingly for everyday use. The keyhole serves both as an interesting design element and also as a handle, making it easy to pour for those uninitiated with decanters.
Even if you are in the habit of using a decanter every day doesn't mean you can't go for a little bit of flair. This wide-bottomed beauty brings the drama while still serving its aeration purpose, while not setting you back financially for it.
A basic whiskey decanter that's so friendly in price, it's appropriate for Secret Santa gifting. What's more, you don't need to stop at whiskey or wine here. For that friend or family member who's ultra deluxe, suggestions for use also include such items as mouthwash.
Decanters with flair
Reminiscent of a spinning top, this playful design by Peugeot is both elegant and whimsical. Additionally, its natural rotating action helps to further aerate young red wines in need of a little additional action.
This selection of decanters entitled Mamba brings an element of danger. This serpentine shape nonetheless does its job where aeration is concerned but also is dramatic enough to serve as a table centerpiece.
A rogue mixing glass to literally stir things up, for those whose spiritous leanings cannot be contained by wine or whiskey. Mezcal, whose origin story is in and of itself mystical, is paired with service pieces designed to harness the energy of crystals in cocktail making.
Because you absolutely know someone who would lose it over this nautically themed, globe-shaped decanter and glass set, whether or not they even drink anything harder than KoolAid.