February 16, 2019 – Aerating wine is a trending passion for wine lovers. For an industry obsessive about blocking oxygen from wine packaging, it might seem odd to be finding ways and spending money to add it back in. That’s because a little oxygen enhances the flavor. Operative word being “little”.
Back in the good old days, wine would be poured into a decanter and given time to open up. Swirling wine in the glass also adds oxygen. But these days, instant gratification is in demand and no one wants to wait 30 minutes or more to pour a glass of wine. Besides, this is the 21st century and there’s got to be a high tech way that’s better. Enter the aerator.
The new WinePrO2 review
There are quite a few clever devices on the market but recently we were sent the new WinePrO2 to review. We like this one because by a simple change of canister, it can add a cloud of argon gas to protect and preserve the wine left in an open bottle. Safe, tasteless argon gas is the way to go. Finding the best applicator is the next challenge.
But dual use is not the only thing that makes WinePrO2 unique. We talked to Tom Belcher, the creator of the system, who has a degree in applied physics, and he told us that after first trying a certain, simple device for aeration, he began running tests. “I proceeded to take measurements of the dissolved oxygen content before and after the use of the funnel to see just what it did. After measuring the minimal results of this device compared to traditional decanting at the 2 – 3 hour point, I was determined to ‘engineer’ an objective approach to control the dissolved oxygen level in a wine over the entire range.
“After eight years of development, the WinePrO2 device was launched (November 2018). It surpassed its initial goal and actually allows the user to go beyond the traditional 70-80% dissolved oxygen content up to a super-saturated state (above 100%). This allows a wide range of uses and it is adjustable for different wines which respond differently to more or less oxygen content,“ he said.
The WinePrO2 arrived elegantly boxed with two canisters. The one for decanting contains concentrated oxygen. The other has argon gas. Why concentrated oxygen? This is documented on the web site. And since we’re not physicists, it would be better if you read about it there. Aerating wine certainly affects the taste and like everything to do with wine taste, it is completely subjective and it is fun to experiment.
Wine is not the only adult beverage that can benefit from aeration. WineProO2 has been tested with various Bourbons, Scotch, Cognac, aged Venezuelan Rum, and Añjeo Tequila with positive results. Even beer. Belcher told us he tested a Belgian “Quadruple” beer with a professional beer judge and other beer devotees. All agreed it was livelier and more effervescent.
WinePro2 is available via the web site for $199.95 and comes with a 12-month warranty. Replacement cartridges for either oxygen or argon gas are available for $11.95 for one or $29.95 for three. The decanting cartridge (oxygen) will aerate 12 750 ml bottles by the glass. The Preservation (argon gas) cartridge will preserve 60 opened 750ml bottles.