Why do we decant? Well, mainly to separate off any sediment in an older or unfiltered wine. Decanting can also help to open up a wine, though whether that's necessary is subject to debate. The two best reasons, though, are to get the wine ready for service before the flurry of getting dinner on the table, and because a pretty, clear glass vessel allows the wine to catch the light and show off its color.
For the full article, check out the new issue of Wine Spectator, on newsstands September 30, 2006.
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