You know the ones I’m talking about: They’re crystal or glass and wide at the bottom, arcing up a narrow neck at the top. They look like lamp bases or glass flower vases, and to some folks, filling these contraptions with wine can feel like nothing more than snooty ceremony. This sturdy $17 wine carafe, which I bought while browsing for something else entirely, reminded me of the way the house wine is served in casual trattorias and cafés. While it doesn’t expose the wine to quite as much air as a formal, wide-bottomed decanter does, using this carafe does help to aerate wine significantly more than just taking the cork off the wine and letting it sit. Then, come dinner time, when the carafe is empty again, the wine goes in, the music turns on, and every glass tastes delicious.
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