The purpose of decanters is to bring air to a wine, to allow it to “breathe.” A little air can be a great thing for wines, especially the big, young wines that need to open up. This action helps a wine open up, allows the molecules to start dancing, the aromas to explode, the flavors to brighten… The classic way to bring this about is using a decanter, which allows air to more surface area of the wine. But there are also some devices on the market that speed up that aeration process, particularly if you have not had enough time to decant a wine, or if you want to just have a glass of wine aerated. These devices are fantastic gifts and great to have in the cellar.
Watch this video to see what options you have to give your wine a little air!
Obviously Wine.com is gift-giving central for wine lovers, but specific gifts appeal more to specific types of wine lovers… so instead of sorting through our entire gift selection, we’ve broken it down to a few different “groups.”
For Him (otherwise known as: For the Esquire Man): Think James Bond Bollinger, eccentric wine openers and golfers who make wine.
For Her (otherwise known as: For the Glamorous Gals): Mom, sister, hostess, etc… Think lovely bubbly gift sets, hostess trinkets and luscious vino.
For the Rock Star: For those who like to jam… wines with Grateful Dead and Pink Floyd Labels, as well as Elvis decorated bottles.
For the Art Lover: Anyone who buys for a label will appreciate wines that look pretty AND taste good.
For the Foodie: Going gourmet for that person who loves to use wine when they are cooking… and sometimes even put it in the food!
For Giving Back: Whether to community or environment – think organic wine & wines that give proceeds to a charity.
No matter the personality or preferences of the wine lover on your list, we think you can find the perfect gift. If not, we’re sure, like us, you’ll find something perfect for you! 🙂
We think one of the most important parts of enjoying wine is getting it open! At Wine.com we have a number of excellent ways to open your wine, including some great gift ideas. See a few of our favorites here in this video.
It’s 12-12-12, the last time the month, day and year will perfectly align until the next century. Since most of us won’t be around then, for those who find luck in numbers, it’s a big day. We like it because we can do fun things like offer 12% off 12 bottles and other 12 combinations.
So I’m pulling out my top 12 bottles for the holidays here. For MY 12 bottles, I’d choose these, each with a purpose for this holiday season.
The white splurge: Leeuwin Estate Art Series Chardonnay 2009 – this Margaret River wine is like Australia’s Montrachet (I know, don’t you hate it when people compare wine to Burgundy?). Hands down one of my favorite Chardonnay and perfect for a holiday splurge.
The red splurge:Antinori Tignanello 2009 – okay, so if you drink this now, you’d have to decant it for a long time… but everyone should try a “Tig” and the ’09 was a beautiful vintage.
The bubble splurge:Champagne Krug Grande Cuvee – I could drink Krug everyday and twice on Sundays and claim a very happy life. A rich and full-bodied bubbly, this is the wine to buy should you be able to drop the dough on bubbles 🙂
The perfect dinner white: Chehalem 3 Vineyard Pinot Gris 2011 – It holds up to savory and spice as well as rich and creamy. With a perfect balance of racy acidity, floral notes and sweet fruit, this wine is a great match for the dinner table.
The perfect dinner red: Artesa Carneros Pinot Noir 2010 – Thank goodness it’s easier to find a Pinot Noir under $20 these days. Artesa consistently delivers, with rich fruit and bright acid, a palate-pleaser and food-friendly of course.
The perfect party bubbly: Jaume Serra Cristalino Brut Cava – I could try to be creative, but won’t bother -this bubbly is a go-to for parties. It’s great year after year, always a top-seller and always a great value. Can’t beat it.
The perfect party white: La Vieille Ferme Cotes du Luberon Blanc 2011 – my parents buy this by the case as it’s a perfect everyday or party sipper. It has no fake oak or sweet aftertaste, just clean, crisp and easy-drinking.
The perfect party red: d’Arenberg Stump Jump Red 2010 – easy going and easy drinking. That’s what you want in a party wine, and the Stump Jump is perfect for that. It’s an all-season wine (great for summer, winter and all if it in-between).
Hostess gift wine:Schramsberg Mirabelle Brut – bubbles are perfect for the hostess-with-the-mostest, and Schramsberg Mirabelle is a delicious wine that is perfect to serve at a party or with a meal.
Wine for toasting:Canard-Duchene Authentic Brut Rose – I had to make up a subject to get this bottle of bubbles in – one of my favorites, especially for the price. It’s lovely in the glass, great bubbles and flavors from start to finish.
The wine that goes with everything: Chateau Ste. Michelle Eroica Riesling 2011 – obviously it has to be a Riesling… and this particular bottle, which marries fruit, acidity and sweet in delicious harmony, can go on any table and in any glass and be well-suited there.
Pick out your 12 for 12-12-12. It’s a day to celebrate and wine is certainly the way to go.
Champagne has its reputation for a reason. It crafts wine like no one else. You can think of the market in Champagne like real estate in Manhattan. There is only ONE Manhattan and it will always be a high-price market due to the small land size and the high demand for what it has. Champagne is similar. There is only one, it’s unique, and people are willing to pay a premium for what it has to offer. Read more here on Champagne 101.
The thing is, Champagne represents celebration and happiness. When we show up to a party with a bottle of Champagne, or give it as a gift, we bring a big smile to someone’s face. It brings joy. It warms the heart. But it also typically carries a very large price tag.
Good thing we have some value Champagne on hand for you! What makes a good VALUE Champagne? Well, it has to first, come from Champagne. Second, be under $50 and third, knock your taste buds off their socks. Or maybe the phrase should be knock your taste buds off your tongue? Either way, there needs to be a “wow” factor. This is a tough find, but one that is well worth seeking out – after all, finding a good Champagne under $50 = big score.
We’re featuring some of our great value finds today, including one of my all-time favorites, the Canard Duchene Brut Rose. This wine is amazing. It’s a beautiful package, but the wine inside is absolutely delicious, too! At $39.99, totally worth it.
Another favorite happens to be the Pommery Brut Royal. We’ve got it today at $34.99. An all-around classic, it’s the kind of bubbly you want have in your hand for all holiday dinners and parties all season long.
One go-to for me every year is the Gosset Brut – this is one of those excellent non-vintage Champagnes that always lives up. It’s on the medium-bodied side and an ideal companion to the whole meal, from appetizer to main course.
And then there is grower Champagne… that refers to Champagne that comes from the actual grower of the grapes. Much of Champagne comes from Champagne houses, who purchase grapes from a number of growers. This means the grower has complete control, from vine to the final dosage. We have an incredible example of this in the Jean Vesselle Brut Reserve 100% Grand Cru. At under $50, you absolutely have to try this wine. It’s structured and seductive, layered and complex. Seriously a winner!