Anyone that drinks wine on a regular basis knows what an aerator can do for a bottle of wine. But did you know some people claim they can do the same for spirits – especially whiskey?
Vinturi, the top wine aerator brand, states that their spirits aerator “releases the full potential of any undiluted spirit, allowing it to be appreciated like never before.”
I can’t speak for everyone but I’m pretty sure it’s hard to appreciate a glass of bourbon more than I already do. But since Vinturi offered to provide me with an aerator for review I thought I’d give it a try. What follows is my testing and thoughts on the Vinturi Spirit Aerator.
The aerator itself is well made. It’s made of plastic made but has a wonderful heft that matches Vinturi’s luxury image. To prevent any metal parts from touching your whiskey the valve works by magnetism. The magnet is a nice touch that is by far the coolest aspect of the aerator.
To put the aerator through its paces I tested it on both a modern bourbon (Woodford Reserve) and a vintage bourbon (1942 I.W. Harper). Each was poured into two glasses – one straight from the bottle and one filtered through the aerator. The glasses for each bourbon were then shuffled so I wouldn’t know which was which. (No, I didn’t mix up all four glasses. That would have screwed things up.)
After sampling all the bourbon samples, I found the Vinturi did have an effect on the bourbon but it wasn’t positive. I found the aerated samples to have a rougher nose with prominent chemical notes. The palate was also hotter and unbalanced. It was as if each bourbon’s aromas and flavors were pulled apart and scrambled back together. Far from the “full potential” promised on the Vinturi website.
Even if it had improved the taste of my whiskey I don’t think I would add it to my whiskey drinking routine. I don’t like the idea of having to pour my bourbon into a device before getting to enjoy it. Then there’s the fact that you need to clean the aerator after each use. That’s too much work between the bottle and my belly.
My recommendation is to skip the aerator and invest the money in another bottle of bourbon. Make sure to let folks know it’s not something for your holiday wish list either.
Do you hear me Santa?