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“Decanting whiskey is very different than for wine,” says Jordan Nova, assistant director of food and beverage at Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills. He explains that while wine decanters introduce oxygen to the spirit, which mellows its acidic taste, it’s a completely different story with whiskey.
“Since whiskey has higher [levels of] alcohol, relatively little tannin and no acidity, it won’t change in the decanter,” Nova adds. So, why decant, you may ask?
“We decant because they [decanters] look great,” he says. And we couldn’t agree more.
But not all whiskey decanters were created equal. Consider the glass quality and thickness first, Nova suggests. Look for a product with fairly solid and stable bottom since you’ll be lifting and setting it down often.
If you opt for a crystal decanter, then make sure it's not leaded. “The amount of lead that could leech into whatever liquid you place in there could become dangerous rather quickly. Spirits stored over a number of years could certainly have an exponentially higher level of lead in them,” says Josh Curtis, bar director at Malibu Beach Inn.
Another thing to pay attention to when purchasing a whiskey decanter is whether the stopper or the lid has a rubber or plastic liner. If they don’t, they will grind the edges every time the glass connects making a fine dust of glass that will certainly be in whatever liquid you store in it, according to Curtis.
“This seal for the lid will also aid in not allowing any booze to evaporate over time,” he adds.
Now check out the best and most elegant decanters that will surely jazz up your home décor as well.
Juliska Graham Whiskey Decanter
This classic glass decanter sports a sleek body and an intricately designed stopper—an elegant and versatile option that would match most home décors.
To buy: $185, neimanmarcus.com
Tom Dixon Tank Platinum Stripe Whiskey Set
Hand-applied platinum decals complement this whiskey set, which oozes a roaring 20s vibe.
To buy: $295, neimanmarcus.com
DeCicio Glass Hand-blown Decanter with 24K Gold Leaf Stopper
The stopper of this smoky grey glass decanter features a 24-karat gold layer that will match perfectly any home interior designed with opulence in mind.
To buy: $220, goop.com
1930s Whiskey Glass Decanter Set
To buy: $1,075, 1stdibs.com
Christofle Paris Scottish Whiskey Decanter
Inspired by traditional tartan plaids, this exquisitely designed decanter will add a touch of old school elegance to your dinner parties.
To buy: $590, christofle.com
Waterford London Square Decanter, Smoke
The combination of clear and smoky brown crystal makes this decanter a total eyecatcher.
To buy: $395, bloomingdales.com
Riedel Nachtmann Shu Fa Whisky Decanter and Glasses Set
This German-made crystalline decanter sports minimal design—a sleek addition to any home bar.
To buy: $160, bloomingdales.com
Baccarat Harmonie Decanter and Double Old Fashioned Set
Made in France by one of the country’s most prestigious crystal producers, this decanter dons classic cut details.
To buy: $990, bloomingdales.com
Jeff Miller Crystal Decanter
Pour whiskey in style thanks to this modern decanter with a large mouth and a unique prism-inspired shape.
To buy: $440, ahalife.com